Notes to my Younger Self

2020 is proving to be a year filled with challenges. We are being tested in ways none of us could’ve ever imagined. And also happens to be a new decade for the world and for me! As I begin a new decade of my life, I find myself reflecting on the lessons learned and the challenges I’ve faced. Below some of my reflections, thoughts, and advise I would give to my younger self. 

My Dear Ann, 
Be present. The good, the bad, and the ugly. You cannot change the past but you can change how you react to it.  Loosen your grip on the future- it really is out of your control.
Honor your mistakes, learn from them. Forgive yourself. Don’t dwell on the “if only”. 
Listen to your heart. It is your truth. Always remember that a broken heart still beats. Trust that it will always lead you to the path you were meant to travel.
The lessons we seek are not found in books or inspirational messages. It much more than that. Search your soul. Go deep. Again, and again until you see the truth you were meant to find.
The truth is life is can be messy. Following all the rules does not immunize you from pain. There will be bad days and good days. Lean onto the goodness, it can change in an instance.
Always be gracious and kind. You never know what someone else is going through. We all have a story. 
Be humble and proud of you. And never underestimate your power. You’ve had the power all along my dear, you just didn’t know it. In time, your time your light will shine through.
Feel it. The hurt, the pain, the sadness, the joy, and happiness too. Feel is all. Live it all. Embrace it. 
Sometimes one of the hardest things to do is to accept the unacceptable. You are not a super hero. It’s impossible to fix everything or make things better. It’s hard. 
And finally my dear, remember, you are braver, stronger, and smarter than you ever imagined. You are loved.