February 9, 2012

What I would say...

"The Journey"
(Self Portrait #8)

Growing up is a tough road to haul.  I'm not sure it is a journey that is ever truly finished.  Maybe that is a good thing...the eternal quest.  It keeps you young, if it doesn't kill ya.  Where I am in life right now, I'm in limbo.  On one hand I feel I'm old enough that I SHOULD know better.  Yet, I'm young enough to realize I often don't...and SOMETIMES I even enjoy when that happens.  It's quite the conundrum.  Just when I think I might yearn for the days when I was a care-free teenager,  I glance across the room at my youngest...my 14 year old daughter...and smack myself for not knowing better.  If I could JUST keep my journey but trade-in the wrinkles the trek has left...THAT I could live with.

Teen-aged angst and insecurities.  I've been through it once myself, two more times with Things #1 and #2, and now apparently because I couldn't get it right any of those times...I'm challenged with it again with Thing #3.  Knowing what I know now, being the grown up and wise person I have some how morphed into (insert sarcasm), what pearls of wisdom would I impart on my teen-aged self to help me on my journey..if I could put time in a bottle?

1.  Confidence is beautiful and so are you exactly the way you are.  Of all the things in life, confidence is the thing it's okay to "fake" until you don't have to fake it anymore.

2.  "SPF" does not stand for "Sun, Play, Fun".  Back away from the Baby Oil as a tanning aid.  You might think YOU never will mature..but your skin will!

3.  Smile more. People will mistake your insecurities and lack of smile for being snobby.  You are going to get wrinkles on your face anyway, so there is no reason NOT to smile. Plus, you  have a pretty good sense of humor...stop hiding it.  FYI, you are gonna marry a dentist, Karma baby!

4.  Don't read about diseases and sicknesses in encyclopedias.  You are highly susceptible to developing their symptoms.  Remember that whole "lock jaw" in the children's encyclopedia incident?  Plus, the computer is coming.  Trust me, GOOGLE is not your friend.  It is the future's equivalent of the Encyclopedia Britannica on steroids.  I see lots of brain tumors and life threatening false self-diagnoses in your future.  You better marry a very patient man....with good health insurance.

5.  Don't let other people rent space in your head.  You have enough voices in there of your own, trust yourself.

6.  First impressions stick.  In case you doubt me, I have 3 words for you:  Johnny "Pick-Nose" Gillardi. Is that 4 words?  Okay, math will NEVER be your strong suit.

7.  Stop trying to talk your mom into letting you give up the piano.  You will regret it for the rest of your life.

8.  Twirling fire batons is not a life defining achievement.

9.  Don't be afraid to try new things.  It is a basic human right to make an ass out of yourself on occasion.  And sometimes it's fun too (just make sure no one has a camera).

10.  There will always be difficult people in the world.  You can't change them.  Just don't date them.

11.  Life is unfair at times.  But that is why the universe makes room for Karma.

12.  Nothing you do is a waste.  When you get older, if nothing else, it will give you something to blog about.

Of course, being the know-it-all teenager that I was, I never would have listened to any of this.  I had to make my own mistakes along the journey.  I'm still making them.  I wonder what my 80 year old self would tell me today?  Probably that "Confidence is beautiful" and "There is a good reason you can't find your batons".  Sometimes you just need to be reminded over, and over again.  Sort of like Thing #3.  Yep, the journey never ends.  But after looking at this photo I posted...I really should get a pair of jeans that don't get so baggy while I'm on the trip!



  1. Love the feeling from your photo. And especially agree with your eloquently and cleverly written point 3 & 5.

  2. As always thank you for the laughs intertwined with wisdom. I like baggy jeans. Comfort is king. That could be #13.
    I bet thing #3 is listening, she just doesn't want you to know.

  3. Kathy, I love this post so much. I felt like I was reading about myself!! Thanks for this.

  4. what a beautiful entry, i could have written it myself but you are a much better writter ;)))

    i always told my boys that i was giving them "material", for future therapy sessions! they get it now!

    kids, they really should come with a manual!!

  5. This is beautiful! My mom always said that growing up is hard to do, I now say that being a grown up is hard too but worth it!


    Kathy, you so crack me up! I love reading your blog posts. But I must be careful not to be drinking anything whilst doing so, because I will no doubt end up spitting whatever it is I'm drinking all over my computer screen. You make me laugh out loud!

    Loved Numbers 1,3,8, and 10. Fabulous! Ha hah... ;)

    And this is a really cool image, by the way. :)

  7. All so eloquently put, Kathy, in your own marvelous way with wit and a hint of sarcasm. Sounds like a recipe for a good life. So glad we got connected my fellow Blackburn.

  8. Oh my dear friend- you spoke to my soul. These words could have just as easily been typed by my own fingers. So well said!!!!

  9. You have a gift Kathy. Seriously. Your post are always enlightening, charming, witty and so entertaining. Why is I that a DVD manual is so complex and yet we get nothing when our kids come along? Hmmmmmm

  10. You think your jeans are baggy...

    Great post -- but you are right. Anyone under the age of 30 will not listen. :)

  11. I love your image...you have an amazing way of putting things into words. I wish I had your talent.

    Part of growing up is making your own mistakes, part of being a mum is trying to save them from making these mistakes. Not till they turn thirty something will they come to you and say... Oh Mum, I should have listened to you.

  12. I feel as tho something is not quite right in your world...however I loved your post as always you bring such beauty to words with or without the baggy jeans.

  13. Deanna, just some teen-aged angst in the house got me to remembering my teen aged years, which lead to some reflections. This too shall pass...no worries :)


  14. So well put my friend! And I should have started building my suit of armor for this teenage stage years ago.

    And of course I love your photo! Hoping the angst turns the corner soon!!

  15. I love this: "Don't let other people rent space in your head. You have enough voices in there of your own, trust yourself."
    I am sooo very guilty of it. I can let someone's statement or comment consume me for days when it really should have very little bearing on my life!

  16. Hahaha I do love this photo baggy jeans and all.


  17. If only we knew then what we know now. Love this post. The photo is excellent too. Thank you for linking up to the Thursday Favorite Things blog hop linky party. Sending Happy Weekend Wishes! .xo

  18. LOVE this photo and the "notes" from your teenage self. (I really must do this, but mine would be a bit rough around the edges. Good for a laugh though! lol) Growing up is hard. I'm still wondering if it just magically "happens" one day, or if we just grow into it. And for Pete's sake! WHEN does it finally happen?! I really would like to know.