An Open Letter to Myself

By Nop Monineath

© Sik-life / 2017 / licensed under CC0

Dear self,

How are you doing? I hope you are doing well. I know life has been tough but you have done quite a good job to stay alive. Thank you for not giving up.

Life is not a straight line, it goes up and down. If you are sometimes happy or sometimes sad, be glad because this is life. If you don’t want these ups and downs in life, then that is as good as wanting death.

The challenges you have gone through, and those you will face in the future, may break you down. It makes you think about your self-worth, your weakness, and your failure. This devil will try to hold you from walking toward your goal. It is like a dark cloud full of negative thoughts that turns even darker every time you look up to find a hope.

During our past life journey, I am terribly sorry that I was not great enough to ignite your motivation, was not good enough to encourage, to appreciate you. Sorry that I allowed you to hang your head down low. I was not all ears to listen to your problems. I did not stand up for you.

But behind these dark clouds, there is a bright blue sky waiting to shine on you once you blow those clouds away. The same goes to these hardships; while you are looking for help to unlock this hardship, you also learn something: nobody can help you but yourself.

Have you noticed that you have changed? You have. You have improved. I am glad that you did. You are able to drive to school, ask for information, call to make an appointment, etc., all by yourself. You got excited to come to the UNICEF office for a meeting with people you have never met before, all by yourself. It was a hundred percent different from the past, when your anxiety would make you cancel your attendance by using “I’m busy” as an excuse. This change is beautiful. Keep it going throughout your life.

I hope you are more confident to stand up and rise up to challenges. I hope you stop comparing your life to that of others. Tell yourself that your life is perfectly imperfect. At the end of the day, it is all about yourself. Always learn to love and appreciate yourself before you want to be accepted or loved by others.

As I am writing this letter, your life isn’t fully figured out yet. You are not 100% sure of your direction, or what you are going to do long-term in life. The clock is running way too fast. Future is something that keeps you anxiously awake at night. So someday in the future, let’s say in 2 or 3 years, once you come back to read this letter, I hope you will feel happy that you have followed a path that you are proud of, which allows you to understand yourself better.

Surprise me with what you have in store. And something to remember is that it is okay to not know what you want to do in life.



Views expressed here are those of the author’s and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of UNICEF.

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