To Whom It May Concern: (And by that I mean myself)

Dear Me From Three Years Ago,

The Me Of Christmas Past:

I know that thirteen is an unlucky age to be -

that thirteen year old me is a difficult person to be -

but I promise you things get better

even if they have to fall apart first.

Because trust me, at fifteen,

I was looking back wishing I was thirteen.

Stepping into a new place with a smile

a little too small to match my face.

Thirteen is a difficult age

and your name is a difficult word to fit in your mouth.

Mom says that you're too young

but that never stopped us

and she knows that we're not dumb.

Nothing stopped us before from learning new words

 

so it's ok

 

to spell things out like,

dissociation

and disconnect,

asexual

and panromantic.

 

It’s ok to learn

that love is more than stolen kisses

and sparks in the dark, that

sometimes it is laughing with friends

while sitting on a park bench.

There is more to this world

than the stories you’ve read.

 

Dear Me From Two Years Ago,

The Me Who Thought The World Was Ending:

 

It does.

 

It hurts.

I’m sorry.

 

But there are worse things to be than fourteen and lonely.

Because you used to be all sharp edges and sharper words,

a tongue that blazed and was never afraid

of hurting the ones you loved.

 

You’re kind of an asshole.

So it’s ok

 

when everything falls to pieces,

when your world shatters,

when everything hurts.

It’s ok

because familiar hands will find yours.

And maybe you felt lonely but you were never alone.

 

I remember a teacher telling you

depression

is when a person hits the ground and

just keeps

falling. Depression

is when there is no rock bottom,

there’s just an endless spiral.

 

Dear Me At Fourteen:

This story isn’t about you.

You hit rock bottom and rebuilt your world.

But open your eyes and look to your right and left.

You’re not the only one that’s left.

When you rebuild your world,

don’t hang yourself at the center.

You’re not the Sun or the Big Bang.

You’re not the protagonist of anyone’s story

except your own.

The world is bigger than you imagined.

The world is more than you.

Let the waves of time smooth out your edges,

let yourself become something

calmer

and more collected

and, most importantly,

more compassionate.

This story isn’t about you anymore.

 

Dear Me From One Year Ago,

The Me Who Felt As If Nothing Could Fix This:

The first time you see burning red lines

decorating your friend’s arms

is still branded in my mind. (Our mind?)

I can’t prepare you for that.

I don’t think anything could.

And you’re going to shake a lot

the first time she talks to you about it.

Anxiety will fill you up like the carbon

bursting from a bottle of Coke.

Your veins are going to feel like they’re bursting,

the room will blur, and

the ground will crack in half beneath you.

This doesn’t ever change but hold your breath because

you have to say

something.

 

There isn’t anything you can do for her.

But let me tell you. Thank God you learned how to say

I love you

because sometimes that’s enough.

 

I’m sorry.

 

It isn’t always going to be enough.

You aren’t enough.

But the world is

bigger

than you imagined. The world is

more

than you.

And some days it might seem as if you are watching

the timer run down

as she sinks into the quicksand.

Some days it might seem

like she just might disappear.

 

It’s not ok.

 

But make sure she knows that she is here

in your heart, in your life, in this world.

Make sure she knows that she is the protagonist

of her very own story.

 

Dear Me From Half A Year Ago,

The Me Who Was Convinced That She Might Die:

I know you don’t care about anything I have to say

so I’ll say the one thing you’ll pay attention to.

She’s going to be ok.

She is strong. Have faith in her.

 

Dear Me From The Past,

All The People That I No Longer Am:

I’m glad you’re not getting these letters.

Who would you become, who would I be now,

if you knew

everything you’ll do.

 

You did alright and

suffering isn’t always a bad thing.

You want a map or a guide but, really,

you don’t need one.

 

Dear Me From The Future:

Don’t bother mailing me a letter.

I’ll get there soon enough.

 

This poem is about: 
Me
My community
Our world

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