Today, I turned 32 years old and I have to say that my 30s just keep getting better and better. I am truly enjoying where I am at in my life. I have accomplished a lot and I am grateful for all the trials and joys that have brought me to this time in my life. I often look back on my younger years and think about the things I wish I had known back then. How much pain and worry I would have saved myself in those years when I just wasn't sure that things were ever going to turn out right. If I could write a letter to my younger self...
Dear Teenage Lawfrog,
High School is difficult for everyone. Even those who seem so self-assured are harboring fears of falling from grace. They have the same fears you do, they are just better at hiding it.
You are a geek of sorts, but that's ok! In 15 years, you will be an attorney studying for your Master's degree in psychology. Those who made fun of you truly had their best years in high school and that is a very sad thing.
Be glad you made the choice to go to University of Oregon. You will meet your lifetime best friend there and you will have experiences that you will look back on fondly. You will love the journalism school and you will find out things about yourself that you need to know. Oh, and don't take those two years of French. Take Spanish instead. It will be a lot more useful in your future.
Dear 20's Lawfrog,
Your first marriage is going to be tough. You will spend 6 years with a man who will test your strength and emotions in a way that you don't think you will be able to withstand. Not only will you withstand it, you will triumph and once again learn so many lessons that will be valuable in the future.
Be glad you got divorced early in your life. After the pain subsides, you will use that experience to help a lot of others. You made a great decision to go to Houston. Law school will be a rewarding experience that you will never forget. It will make you feel accomplished in ways you can only dream of right now. You will struggle with some of your classes and you will make, and then lose, some friends. It's ok. You will come through it all with flying colors. You will pass the bar on the first try so don't worry about that. The months between the exam and the results will be trying and scary. Keep praying. It's worth it. Just don't worry.
You will meet the man who will become your husband in the summer of 2004. Early in that year you will suffer a great heartache, one which you don't think you will ever get over. From that experience you will meet two people with whom you will form close bonds. Pain shared is pain halved. Don't forget that. It will help you and it will help others you meet along the way. You will become a more compassionate and understanding person because of the pain you suffer. That will make it worth it. Trust me on this one.
You will love your second wedding. It will be beautiful and everything you want. Your second husband will present some challenges, but they are challenges you need in your life. You will overcome those challenges alongside him and you will be happier than you've ever been. You have a keeper this time. Remember that when you want to smother him in his sleep.
Dear 30's Lawfrog,
The year you turn 31, you will get your puppy, Peanut. She will be the light of your life and you will wonder how you ever lived without her. You will bore your friends with tons of pictures and drive Peanut crazy with all your snuggling and love of her.
On the not so bright side, you will have a tough time finding the right job. You will go through a lot of true psychopathic bosses, but you will eventually land on your feet in the right place for you. You will enjoy it and savor it all the more because you know what it is to suffer in the workplace. You will love your psychology studies. You will be happier and more fulfilled than you've ever been. The 30s are just starting and they are going to be wonderful!