Sunday 17 September 2017

Nerd Church - A Letter To My Younger Self

(Warning: this post contains references to suicidal thoughts and feelings, as well as brief references to grief, depression, abusive/toxic friendships, and the general randomness of my life.)

I'd been thinking of doing one of these things for a while - y'know the 'Hi little 15-year-old Cee, this is the advice I'd give you!' kind of things.

Then, between my birthday on Friday (no, I'm not telling you how old I am - it ain't happening,) and reading blogpost ideas by Jemma @ Dorkface, which suggested writing a letter to your younger self, I was like - IT'S A SIGN!!!!!!!!!*

*Yes, there was coffee. Also, my parents are hippies.

pic with hearts bursting out of envelope

So this is what I'd tell my teenage self, if I somehow got the chance to use the time-travelling postal service.

(Well... the travelling to the past postal service - I guess if you send a letter, it's always gonna end up in the future...)

Dear Cee...

Wait, you don't use that name yet... I'll start again...

Dear Me (see what I did there?),

Oh man kid, you got some issues.


It's not bad to have problems. It's just life.

People don't understand you - and that's half the trouble. When you stop trying to fit in their boxes, you'll be so much happier.

Look, you got some tough times coming kid, ok?

I know that's not what you wanna hear. Sometimes life kicks you (it kicks us a lot - so get used to it,) but you pick yourself up and dust yourself off. We're too stubborn to stay down.

You're gonna have times when you actually wanna die. I mean that in a serious way.

But you're gonna hang on, ok? You're gonna hang on, and keep hanging on, time and time again. COS YOU HAVE TO.

You're gonna feel like you're weak, when really, we're strong. We're so strong.


Oh, and kid?

That thing you keep avoiding? Keep pushing away because you can't be gay because you like men, and you can't be bi because sometimes you don't like men, or you don't like women, or both?

You gotta face it.

I know kid, you're hoping it'll go away. It won't. It's you.

But don't you dare for one SECOND feel ashamed of that.

You're sexually fluid.

You don't know what that is yet - you won't hear the term for years and years, but when you do, and when you find out what that means... everything will click.

Coming out will be one of the most terrifying things you'll ever do.

But it'll be the start of allowing you to be you.


You're still friends with N, aren't you? Ditch her.

She's not your friend.

Friends don't treat you like that.

She's abusive; she manipulates you and makes you feel like everything that is YOU is somehow shameful. It's not.


Kid, there's so many things I can tell you about the life we live.

So many important things that I'd have to write ten letters to cover it.

Like I said, there's tough times ahead kid.

So many tough times that you'll wonder whether it's worth carrying on. IT IS.

These bad things aren't your fault.

And somehow - metaphorically limping - we make it through. And we keep making it through. And we WILL keep making it through, ok?


But life's not all bad kid.

Even though there's heartbreak and pain lining your future, even though bad things happened and hurt and there's things you'll wish you could've done... it was worth it.

It's always gonna be worth it, kid.

You're gonna learn how to cling onto the smallest piece of happiness with everything you got.

You're gonna learn that your heart is big enough to love the whole freaking world, no matter how many times it pushes you down.

You're gonna learn that hope and love are the most beautiful things on this planet.

You're gonna learn that people are so beautifully intricate and unique and so... themselves... that you're gonna have to love them anyway.

And eventually, if we're lucky, we're gonna learn to love ourself.

We're getting there kid. We're getting there.


Kid, keep reading and writing.

You're gonna start a book blog. It's going to start from pain - depression sucks, kid. But what it's going to give you is worth the world.

You'll talk to authors and write reviews and make friends and so many things that you thought you'd never be able to do.

Even in the dark, cling to books.

They're gonna rescue you. Cos even when we lose ourself, we know, objectively, that we love books. It's us. It's who we are.


Kid, it's been one helluva ride.

We throw up at a rock concert!

We watch as the teachers get drunk at prom (yeah... it's not a great school... on the plus side, dad nearly hit Ms G with the car when she lurched into the road! (He didn't. She was fine.))

We share our poetry and other writing stuff with the internet!

We meet James O'Barr, the author of The Crow, and get a picture with him! Because graphic novelists are always cooler than the A-list to us.

We remember, time and time again, that it can't rain all the time.


We're strong enough to go through so much...

Two coffins in an aisle... friends who aren't friends... your mother crying in your arms... so much more.


But you know what? For all that, I wouldn't change a thing.

At the time, sure. I would've loved so many things to go differently. I would've loved it if the world kicked us even just a little less.

But you can't separate a person from their experiences - not completely, anyway.

Everything we've been through makes us who we are.

And guess what? I kind of like who we are today.

I know, it surprised me too.


So just keep swimming kid. Keep hoping, keep dreaming, keep loving, keep being you.

See you soon,
                         Love from You (in 2017)

(Hopefully that wasn't too sappy for you all!)

Related Reading:

Accidental Hipster Mum

Last updated: 7th May 2019


  1. Aw Cee you're gonna make me cry when you post stuff like this :((( This was beautiful, I've always said this but you have such a way with words that is really really special. You are an amazing writer.

    1. Don't cry!!!!! *hugs Emily* No crying, ok?

      *blushes* You're so sweet Em. Thank you so much :)

  2. It wasn't sappy omg it was wonderful!! And I honestly wish we could all get the opportunity to send a letter back-in-time to our younger selves sometimes gah. 😭 But I loved your letter!

    1. Thanks! (And I think it might've been a little sappy... *kicks sappiness discreetly under rug*) :)

  3. As is obvious in this post, we got to go through some crapvto get to the good stuff. Life is wonderful when it goes right. A smashing letter... *whispers* I think she would like the you that is now. 😉

  4. ok I'm literally crying reading your post. I'm having a very hard time lately with some of the issues in your warning [btw thank you for the warning] and I would love to say something like this to my younger self and even more.. I would love to get a letter from my future self right now as beautiful as yours! Thank you for sharing this Cee!

    1. OMG I didn't mean to make you cry!!!! (Why is everyone crying?! I'm sorry!!!) *sends massive hugs* - you rock, m'k? Don't ever forget that. EVER. <3 <3 <3 <3

  5. and OMG I'm so jealous you met James!!! :)

    1. One of the best moments of my life!!!! There were only 3 of us waiting for him at first, and the promo dude was like, 'we don't have to do this, we can cancel,' and James O'Barr turns to us and is like, 'are you here for me?' and we nod because... power of speech = gone! And he's like, 'OK then, we're doing this!' XD

  6. Haha - I still get asked whether I want a kids ticket at the cinema, so I'm planning on not telling anyone my age ever! :)

  7. I feel like past you was a little bit like past me. I think we'd have got on well together if we'd known each other back then. It sounds like you had a tough time, but I agree that these things shape us xx


    1. Hopefully we would have! (Hopefully we do now! Lol.)

      It was tough... but it always sounds more dramatic when I tell people about it. It didn't feel like that at the time! Lol. :)

  8. There are always so many things you want to tell your past self. I think I'm not at that point yet because I'm still learning, but maybe one day I will be there. It was brave to share something so personal on your blog, and even if it is written to the younger you, maybe it will help others as well along the way.

    1. Thank you very much :) <3 This blog has always been somewhere where I am completely honest, and hope it'll stay that way! (But no, it's not always easy.)


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