Monday, September 19, 2016

A Letter to the Gal I Was in 2006 - Friday Reflections (Not on Friday) Vol. 14

Dear 2006 Ericka,

Hey, it’s me, 2016 Ericka.  You don’t know me, but I certainly know you.  In fact, I remember you very well.

If my memory serves me correctly, you just received your People to People Student Ambassador delegation assignment for 2007.  I know you’re quite nervous about accepting the assignment because chaperoning high school students to the other side of the world is not for the faint of heart.  But, this is the trip of a lifetime.  This is THE trip you have dreamed of your entire life.  You have every right to be nervous, for chaperoning teenagers for twenty-one days to New Zealand and Australia is a big responsibility.  However, you really are up to the task, you just don’t know it yet, and believe me when I say that everything will be fine.  Everything will be fine.  You will discover that chaperoning high schoolers is easier than chaperoning the 5th and 6th graders you accompanied to Europe this summer.  I do have one word of advice, however. Don’t get so bent out of shape over the goofy ass things they will do.  They are going to break some rules and they’re going to make some not so great choices, but in the grand scheme of things, these infractions are small.  They are kids, after all.  They may look like young adults, but they are not.  They are kids.  Make them be responsible for their actions, still hold them accountable, but do it in a manner that is more chilled out. 

I know you are also very concerned about your weight and how it will impact your ability to fully participate in all the wondrous activities that are part of the NZ/AUS itinerary.  You are contemplating Weight Watchers and in a few weeks you will start the program.  Weight Watchers will work for you and you will see some amazing results.  Don’t get discouraged on those weeks when there is no loss or even a slight gain.  Stay the course and stick to the program.  A word of caution, though - start taking some hair and nail vitamin supplements now.  Your rapid weight loss will cause you to shed a lot of your hair and you will be dealing with some funky hair regrowth for the next two years that will make styling your hair a pain in the arse.  The supplements should help curb some of that loss.

It is tempting to talk about all the cool and adventurous things you’re going do in the next decade, but I’m not going to.  I don’t want to spoil the surprise and awe of those events happening in real time.  Just know that you will see and do some amazing things, things that I, here in the year 2016, look back on and remember with great joy and pride.  Enjoy every second of those moments.  Do not take them for granted.

Even though you and I are the same person, I do have ten years worth of experience and wisdom on you.  I’d like to share a few words of advice with you.  Whether you heed this advice or not is a completely different story.  You are, after all, quite stubborn.  I should know.

As you are well aware, your Grandpa B. is getting on in years.  With Granny’s passing, you know that his will to live is going to be diminished.  I know that you and he haven’t always seen eye to eye, but make a point to spend some time with him whenever you go back home for a visit.  Ask him questions about his life, about his parents, about his boyhood, about his courtship with your grandmother, and about his involvement in World War II.  He is a member is what will be known as the Greatest Generation.  Listen to him and absorb his stories.  He fought in the biggest, most deadly war that our planet has ever seen and he survived.  His experience deserves to be heard and to be remembered once he passes from this world.

Around 2012, a big change at work is going to happen.  It’s going to not only rock your world, but everyone else’s world as well.  This change is going to eventually interfere with a spin class that you absolutely love on Tuesday evenings.  I know what you’re thinking - Me?  Spinning?  WTH? (Oops, I forgot - you haven't texted yet!  WTH = What the hell)  Trust me, you’re going to love spinning.  Yes, it’s hardcore and yes it’s badass, but you will LOVE it and you will get some kickass calves, quads, and glutes in the process (which I miss by the way).  Anyway, there’s no way of getting around the problem of making this class on time.  But, just because you can’t make it to this one particular class, don’t give up spinning altogether.  I know you will resent not being able to go to your beloved Tuesday evening class, but go to another class instead.  Just don’t quit.

And lastly, in ten years, you are going to find yourself in somewhat of a mid-life crisis.  Things at home will be off kilter, you’re going to be burned out at your job, you will be diagnosed with peri-menopause, and you will discover that you’ve lost your mojo - all in the span of about 6 weeks.  That is what I’m currently dealing with at the present time as I write this.  I’m hesitant to mention any of this to you, for I trust that I’m going through all of this for a reason in the here and now and, frankly, I really don’t wish to burden you with these things just yet.  But, having said that, there are some things I’d like you to keep in mind and remember when the time comes.

  • Ericka, don’t allow yourself to become complacent. Continue to be the kickass, grab life by the horns gal you are, even when you may not feel like making the effort. There’s a great quote from a movie that you haven’t seen yet, but I want you to commit to memory now – Be the leading lady in your own life! 
  • Second, watch your weight. Your weight plays a big factor in the numbing, complacency for the status quo that I’m trying to break free of now.  Yes, I hate to break this to you, but all the weight you are about to lose, you will slowly gain back over the next ten years.  It's quite obvious that this is a battle you and I will never really win, but that we must continue to fight until the end.  Just do me a favor and try to be more mindful when your pants get a little snug or your bra band becomes a little too tight. Instead of taking the easy way out and buying the next size up, fight the fight and cut back on your calories. You don't have to give up everything you enjoy eating, just be more mindful. 
  • Finally, insist that you and R continue to date. Trust me, life will get in the way and will make it hard, but you MUST do this. The two of you need to continue to reconnect, to discover new things together, to court, to remember why you fell in love with one another in the first place. Just because you’re married, that doesn’t mean that the courtship ends.  And, one last thing, remember that just because you and R know each other well, that doesn't mean you get to stop communicating.  You must talk.  You must share your thoughts, your desires, your fears, your frustrations.    Communicate.  Make the effort. Invest the time.  

Well, girl, it's getting late and I need to run.  I'll be seeing ya, if only in my memory.  You take care.

With love, 

2016 Ericka 

PS  Thanks for using sunscreen and moisturizing everyday.  I absolutely love being mistaken for someone in my thirties and I get a huge thrill when I get carded.  I have you to thank for that!


What might you say to the ten years younger version of yourself?  

As always, thanks for stopping by!  

Linking up with:


Prompts for this week:
1. Write a letter to yourself a decade ago.
2. Use the lyrics of your favourite song as the basis of a short story or a post
3. If you were to choose someone to be Prime Minister or President (depending on your country), who would that be?
4. “Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.” – Albert Einstein. Use this quote within your prompt or as an inspiration for one
5. Picture Prompt (copyright Living my Imperfect Life)

Mackenzie @ Reflections From Me


  1. Be the leading lady in your own life - YES. love that movie :)
    i so wish 2006 me used sunscreen and moisturiser. heck, i wish 2016 me was better at that!
    i love the last bit about you and R. KC and I never really do date nights or anything like that, though I am definitely thinking lately that we need to start. you are right, the courtship shouldn't end.

  2. Sounds like you've packed a lot into the last ten years, including a trip to Australia - my part of the world! I too am struggling with weight and menopause. Not fun! Some great advice and words of wisdom here.

  3. seriously i wish i had told myself to use sunscreen, moisturizer and take care of your skin when i was younger. The freckles on myskin now reminds me just that-how i wish!

  4. Lovely letter t your younger self. Communication is so important and I'm still figuring it all out I reckon. Haha...sunscreen and moisturiser...I need to remember that!

  5. This is great! In 2006 I had my first child, if I had to write to myself then I would have told myself to take things more slowly. I was in such a rush for my baby girl to grow and now she's 10 and I want life to slow down. Sarah #mg

  6. I love this. I always think that hindsight is an amazing thing. If I could write to myself in 2006 I would tell myself that there are so many wonderful things in life to come, that I can get through just about anything and that I am so much stronger than I ever thought possible. My second son died in the summer of 2006, it would be pretty amazing to have known those things back then. #mg

  7. This made for such an interesting read. It's fascinating isn't it? Writing to our younger selves. I've never done it, but I bet it's quite cathartic. It certainly is brilliant to read. Alison x #mg

  8. oh gosh this actually really touched me! I love what you say about your grandfather, I wish I had spoken more to mine #mg

  9. What a wonderful answer to the prompt. I am touched to be allowed in to hear your thoughts and reap your wisdom. My head is filled with all sorts of thoughts of my own last decade...and what will the next one bring too. A very great post indeed. Thanks for sharing with us all. I learned a few things in these few moments. M'wah! #mg


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