Day Two: Letter
Dear 16 - no, 14 (no, 13) - year old me:
There is no changing the past, there is only changing your perspective on it. Know this: it will all be okay.
There will be time for boys, trust me. This is the first and foremost thing I want to tell you because you will spend a ridiculous amount of time being distracted from what is really and truly important and boys - in some way - will be at the core of that.
Trust your instincts. When something feels wrong, you’re right - it is. Walk - run - away. Do not worry about what anyone else thinks. Self preservation is more important than saving face.
All those little mistakes, moments where you pushed buttons and overstepped boundaries (yours and other people’s) - they will show you who you are. Those are the moments that, one day, when it’s really important to be, make you so resilient.
Resilience is the thing you will probably need most in your 20s. Those will be strange but remarkable years. You will need to go through them though - on the other side of it you will fall in love.
You’ll enter your thirties happy and fulfilled.
After you leave skiing (I’m sorry but you won’t be an Olympian), it will take you a long time to find out what your passion is. You’ll look in all the wrong places. But you will find it, and you’ll realise it had been there all along - right from the very beginning. Before skiing.
You’re a story teller. A writer. It’s in your bones - written into your DNA. You were never going to be anything else.
It’s not the easy path, but easy never interested you anyway. You will meet some incredible people who share that passion, and they will be some of the best people you’ll ever know.
Listen to your mother. It is annoying but she is almost always right - not about all things but about you. In your darkest and most vulnerable moments, she’s who you’re going to turn to.
Contrary to what you may think at crucial moments in your life, you will not be alone. So take time for yourself. Revel in that solitude, it will get harder and harder to come by as you get older.
One thing you will struggle with - perhaps, forever - is residual adrenaline. That left over feeling of needing to go fast that stays with you after your skiing days. Oddly, gardening and running will help with that. Try not to drink so much.
Family is everything, including the sisters you’ll make.