To my Teen Self,
By: Spencer Carter (Theos-Kengen)
There are so many things I want to tell you, but first, I want to let you know I love you, and I am sorry you have not felt that. We have had it rough, and still today, we struggle with it, and I am not sure I can definitively tell you it is worth it yet. We do not carry regret, which is one thing that has kept us going, but there is still so much pain. Despite that, I am so proud of you, we have accomplished so much in your short teenage years. We have lived, laughed, cried, and honestly died before you even reach 15.
Remember when we were three how we wanted to be a paleontologist, dig up some fossils, and work in Jurassic Park
well that did not happen, hope you are not too disappointed. We still love that movie and own the DVD series, it is great to watch, and fun to remember our obsession. The scientists of today managed to clone a sheep, and a few other animals, but it seems dinosaurs are a long way off.
You take things in stride so effortlessly, your transition into middle school, then further, at the time seemed so easy. Math will be easy for only a little while longer at least until college, and you get much better at English thanks to some of the most amazing teachers you have ever had, just wait. You make several hundred off dad's grade intuitive program -- do not spend it on that 13'' TV (better yet, buy it at Wal-Mart) and avoid trading in our video games.
Mom and Dad recently divorced, and oddly, we are just fine with that, but our siblings are going to take it harder. They are both going to remarry soon, and even though you are young, tell them what you honestly think about what they say about their new partners. When you meet them, know it okay to make judgment calls based on how you feel. You are intuitive and discerning; saying nothing or saying what you think your parents want to hear is not healthy or the right thing to do. I feel Mother and Father (especially him) could have done better, but you get along with our current stepparents fairly well despite that you do not like them very much.
The world will not end on December 31, 2000 so do not believe those poor friends of yours who think it might. September 11, 2001 we are going to be in US History class with Mr. Black. This day will not seem real, and there will be a lot of confusion after it is all over. Later there will be controversy and a lot of odd things happen, testimony, film, and other evidence, pay attention to the details and believe what your heart tell you. Spoiler Alert: we do believe in the following: aliens, conspiracy theories, merpeople, ghost/spirits, god and a few other things people might call us crazy for, if they ever knew.
You are so beautiful, bright, and talented it amazes me; you can honestly do anything you set your mind to. You take piano lessons soon and even though you only get a few months, you can still play and learn any song you set out to conquer (not that we have learned very many). We still practice on occasion, but it has not been too important, unless we want it to be. Your computer mishaps will guide you on some epic adventures and we have tons of fun building our own.
I know where we are headed; the inevitable clash between sexual identity and religion will be the most challenging thing we are still facing. The sooner you, accept yourself without fearful denial, and realize God will always love you without reservation, you will have opened our eyes to a new and peaceful place. You should talk to mom about your feelings and experiences sooner; it will save a lot of headache.
know that I would not trade dying at 14 for any other experience in the world. You might be wondering if we made it past that, I assure you we did -- through many miracles, prayers, and sheer determination we made it. Although, you will not play any contact sports again (too bad
not), or jump out of a perfectly good airplane to go sky diving (we did want to do that), we made it to 22 (so far).
Do not under any circumstance let mom convince Alesia to buy that stupid Volvo (that eventually becomes your responsibility), and please do not spend so much money fixing a car you knew would die, just buy a new one (even if you have to get a loan). In addition, college is an option if you do not fail even one of your classes your first term (dad will ruin everything). There is little I can see, that we could change, and I am not sure if I would change the past, because we have learned so much through our struggles.
You are not there yet, but you did become an Eagle Scout at 18 (even after moving more times than you can count). You always worked so hard for the little bits you have, and your heart is so big, you try to make everyone happy. You serve others effortlessly, with passion and drive; you are one hell of a deacon quorum leader too. Camping will lose its flare after a few motor vehicle accidences, but you will still love nature. Remember to save for an expensive camera and buy a quality lens instead of a cheap digital.
Just remember, you have to believe in yourself before anyone else will. You do not need to filter or hold all of your thoughts, but it is good to be cautious. Most importantly, I love you. I love your crooked smile, your warm heart, your willingness to help others, your energy, your devotion and passion. You are one awesome kid, stay that way as long as you can, growing up sucks.
See you in a few years, and then we can compare notes.