A letter to me at ten

I see you there.  Yep.  You.  With your nose buried in a book, hanging out on the backyard on the swing Dad made from two ropes and a board.  You don’t think anyone’s watching, but memory is a tricky thing, and I remember the feel of the springtime wind through your tangled ponytail and the gentle sway as you push off the ground absentmindedly with bare toes.

Your brother is probably down by the creek, fishing.  I’ll tell you a secret—today, three decades later, your brother is probably still fishing somewhere.  I can smell the chicken and dumplings wafting outward from the kitchen, too.  And another secret—no matter how many times you try, you’ll never be able to make that recipe as well as Mom can.

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There are so many things I wish I could say to you. I’d give you a list of guys to avoid, for your teenage self to reference, but you wouldn’t listen anyway.  And besides, without the frogs you probably wouldn’t recognize a prince when you find one.

I’d tell you to choose a small college, not a major state university.  You don’t understand it yet, and won’t for a long time, but you’re an introvert, love, and you always will be.

I’d tell you not to worry when your parents divorce.  A decade will pass, but eventually they’ll circle back and find one another again.

I’d tell you that all those times Mom says she hopes you have a daughter just like you, well that happens, and it’s not such a bad deal after all.

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I so wish I could tell you to hug your grandmothers tightly, both so tightly.  There will come a time when you’ll miss them more than your ten-year-old heart can imagine.

I’d like to tell you about today.  Your forty-year-old self.  Less than two weeks to go until the launch of your first novel with a major publisher.  Mom, wife, daughter, sister—writer.  You’re a writer, love.  You did it.

That dream you have the seeds of, even now, buried deep under your ever so practical side.  It will be a while, but every step you take—every mistake, every heartbreak, every joy—will help you down the bumpy road to becoming the writer you’re destined to be.  For better or worse.

So you go ahead and soak in those stories, so many stories, even the ones the prissy librarian believes inappropriate for your age.  Go ahead and nurture that dream, quietly, and with patient persistence.  One day, that dream will bloom.  Trust me.  I know.

But I can’t tell you any of that.  You wouldn’t hear me even if I could.  You’re immersed in A Wrinkle in Time, so I’ll leave you to it.

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4 Replies to “A letter to me at ten”

  1. What a beautiful letter to yourself. One that I can relate too in so many ways. And thank you for your decision to become a writer. We are the grateful recipients of that gift. (Sending out your information to my writing “street team”)

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    1. Thank you for the kind words, Beca! (And especially for sharing with your street team. I’ll confess, I’m not completely sure what that is, but it sounds so cool that I think I need to get one.) It’s been a phenomenal ride so far, and I’m grateful and humbled by every single reader who takes the time to let these stories into their lives for a time. ❤

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      1. Ah, Street team! So many names for this group of people, I bet you have a group. For me, it’s a small group of people who want to know what I am up to in the book writing process.They give me feedback on things like my covers. And a few of them even like reading the book for me one last time to check for proofreading things we have missed. Bless them for that! Friends really. Anyway, I know a few headed over to get your books, and I am sure they love them as much as I do.Thanks, Eliza!

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  2. I’ll be waiting, and peeking in from time to time for your next beautiful piece of art. Your stories are raw yet healing, sad but happy, full of losses and new beginnings that will eventually take the place of open old open wounds. Gifts like these are precious few. Thank you for sharing your talents as a real story teller. I’ll be patient, goods things take time…♡

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