October 22, 2020

A Note to my Teenage Self: It’s Going to be Okay.

Melissa Steussy

I see you flailing, I feel your fear.

I’m here to tell you it’s going to be okay.

Breathe. You are going to be fine.

All of the unknown and chasing will go away, and you will rebound from the thoughts and actions that make you feel less than everyone else.

You feel right now like you don’t have enough, like you will never have enough and I’m here to tell you that we now have enough. We have what we need—our needs are met.

You will lose both of your parents, but it’s not in the scary way it sounds. It becomes a relief in that you will know your mom is safe and you no longer have to worry about getting that call. She was proud of you and loved you and did the best she could with her own demons.

When your dad passes, you guys are close enough, but you don’t feel the same grief as if he was a true father from birth. You will be sad, but you will persevere.

You will continue to persevere through your own addictions and looking for love in all the wrong places. You will rise above. You will break a cycle.

You will be a mother. You will be an amazing mother to two amazing boys, and you will be able to love them. I know you are afraid that you will be like our own mother, but you won’t.

You find your intuition and you create a family that you never had.

You walk tall with your boys. You celebrate with them, and make them feel loved and cherished.

You will be a wife. You will grow. You will find therapists who tell you they are so sorry for what you went through, and you will heal—slowly, but surely.

I see you now, chasing boys and outfits to be okay. I see you trying to portray yourself differently. I see the dis-ease, the trying to fit in, the emulating others to feel “more normal.”

I’m here to tell you that you don’t have to be anything other than who you are at this moment.

I see your insecurity and your inability to look others in the eye. I see your fear at school when you don’t know where to sit or who to befriend.

I’m here to say you, you do not have to give yourself up to have people like you. You don’t have to be the life of the party to “be cool” and make friends.

There is more to you than what boy you are sleeping with and what outfit you are wearing. You have substance. You are smart. You are funny. You have a caring heart.

You are more than trying to drink others under the table and doing the hardest drugs. Escaping from reality is a tool you will use for a long time, until it stops working, but then you can cope. You can breathe through disappointment and things not going your way.

You will learn to listen to that inner voice that tells you, “You are enough; you have always been enough.”

And I will not abandon you.

We will do this together.


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