Today I would like to talk to you about an exercise that I was asked to do this week and I really think that it’s helped me try to really understand my past a little bit better and I’m gonna give you my results. The mission was to make a video to tell myself, my younger self, what would I tell that Tracy when she was 4, 6, whatever years old.
Dear Tracy, this is your grown up self. I’m 55 years young and I’ve come back from the future to tell you some things that you might wanna think about when you’re younger.
I think I’m gonna start at age 6. And I’m gonna tell myself that my mother and my father did not break up because of anything that I did. I can release that guilt. It wasn’t your fault.
If I talk to my Tracy at age 8, I would tell her to remember and really pay attention, an 8 year old doesn’t have a long attention span but one day, your father is going to come over and that’s gonna be the last time that you see him. If you don’t remember putting much attention on it, it’s okay but if you can hear this before you turn 8 and before you learn that your father will never be seen again, would you spend that time differently? Would you put down the Barbie? And just talk to daddy for a few minutes?
At age 10, I would tell myself that I’m not too skinny and my teeth are gonna get straightened out so it will all be okay.
By the time I’m 12, I wanna tell myself that the people that I’m meeting today, the friends that I’m going to meet are going to be there for the rest of my life. Pay attention. You might not know that but if you have people that aren’t good in your life, it’s okay for letting them go. You have that right. You don’t have to hold on to anyone, they are not your father and they are not coming back. It’s good, pick the good ones and keep them forever, okay?
To my 15 year old self, I would like to say, I know that you’re thinking about not doing well in school, just to get any kind of attention out of your parents. But I want you to know that even though you pretend it, not to listen, you weren’t listening and here you are, your older self and guess what? You are smart! So why not shine for that? And not for their attention but for you because the things that you learn, like spelling which I suck at now, it would really help you in life. If you paid more attention in school.
To my 16 year old self, I’d like to say, open your eyes, you’re kind of living in a fairy tale. And when you grow up, you’re gonna find out that there’s always an evil queen or a bad guy, a monster. You’re gonna find that out. And the life that you lead right now on paper — on paper, love that term! It looks good! But I want you to open your ears, open your ears when you’re home. People fighting is not normal, siblings not talking to one another, it’s not normal. And I want you to try to unite you and your sisters because together as a whole unit of sisters, you’re going to be able to change the path of your life because I’m sorry to tell you but your mother was a narcissist. It’s not her fault, we know how she grew up but she’s gonna try to pull your sisters and you apart. Because, she’s not gonna be able to love more than one at a time or pretend that she does. She’s really sucking energy out of them and you. Someday, she’ll be gone, like she is right now. And the one regret would be that you always just wanted her to love you. So, if you can unite your sisters, then you will always have a family, don’t let her pull that apart.
To my 18 year old self, I’d like to say, “Who the hell knows what they’re going to do in — for the rest of their life when they’re 18?’ Don’t judge yourself because you didn’t know how your life was going to turn out. I want you to think of every single job that you are going to have and know that it will have a purpose in your life. Whether you bake wedding cakes, or you scoop ice cream when you’re 16, you’re gonna learn to be a really good mom. If you like to do crafts and arts, that’s gonna help you be a good mother. If you’re creative, you’re going to learn and be an interior designer. And if you’re smart, you’re gonna learn to market, to make websites, to help people because that is going to be your destiny until it’s not.
To my 20 year old self, I’d like to say to find self-respect. If you don’t start to value yourself now more than others, someday, it’s going to backfire. Learn what self-love is. Learn boundaries, boundaries are really important. And sweetie by the time you’re 55, you don’t know them. You’re gonna end up being what they call “people pleaser.” And a people pleaser isn’t a bad person, not a mental disorder. It does stem for your need to be loved when you were a child. And you just wanna make everyone happy. If you make everyone happy, then they will love you. If you make everyone happy, then you were being a good girl. So, know that, you have to respect yourself and you have to love yourself as much as you ever loved anyone else.
To my 30 year old self, I’d like to tell her that she’s going to marry a man and there’s a reason. There’s a gift. But you’re not there to stay. You’re there with a purpose. Your 20 year old self, she was fun, she was wild. But when you met and married your first husband, he taught you a lot about life. He gave you the greatest gift, your son. Don’t feel bad that that wasn’t good enough. It was a step in your life. So, don’t make another bad choice because you think that you’re unlovable.
To my 33 year old self, I’d like to say, you are going to be a great mother. You’re only gonna have one child, but, your motto and your mantra about that, whenever you talk about this wonderful child is going to be that you have the best, so there’s no reason for the rest. He’s a special boy, and you’re blessed, and he will love you forever.
To my 40 year old self, I’d like to say, remember that thing about the fairy tales and the illusion of your actual life? And things that were happening that you just didn’t even really think about? That comes back to you because you make a choice in your 40’s, it’s a blind choice really is. You didn’t do it on purpose. You didn’t really know that people could be unlike you. You didn’t know that they could lie and hurt you and live false lives, you know. I just want you to know that there are people out there, learn about this. They are called narcissists and they’re very dangerous but there maybe a reason that you had to go through that marriage. There may be a light at the end of the tunnel for you if you treat it differently. If you learn that bubbles, beautiful things aren’t love. If you learn that just because someone says they have class but they don’t. You wanna learn to listen to people’s actions more than their words, because Tracy you trust them and you wanna be trusted and people can trust you and you think that’s how everyone is.
But there’s some stuff that’s happened in your life earlier and if you learned some of those lessons, the path might change. It might not and you might end up exactly where you are today, making a YouTube video in your kitchen on a Saturday afternoon. But, if I look back at my life, everything happened for a reason. And I do believe, with all my heart, that I am here to help people now. I am here to do what I can to educate people, young and old. Make a movement. Maybe all of us who have been affected can make a stand. Maybe all of us can change the face of our children, if they can learn about narcissists and personality disorders. What a co-dependent is, self-love. Wouldn’t that be awesome?
Lessons tend to repeat themselves unless you learn them. And this is really good advice, little Tracy. I don’t care how old you were. You have the strength, you have the brains, to have more respect for yourself. Don’t be tricked. Don’t be a target because if you don’t learn these things, you are going to be a target. And it’s not a pretty thing. You’re gonna find out your whole life was a lie. But you know what? this day forward, when I’m making this video to my little Tracy — from this day forward, you’re going to be so much stronger. And you’re going to have a happy ending because you loved the right person, finally. You love yourself, Tracy. You could’ve done this like 30 years earlier. Oh my God! That would’ve been awesome!