Fashion Magazine

Advice to a Pre-teen Girl on Her Birthday

By Janehspark

A colleague of mine had this brilliant idea to gather up advice from all the women in her life for her daughter on her twelfth birthday.  Here’s an excert of my letter:

Happy Happy Birthday! 

So one piece of advice that I wish I could have given my twelve your old self (or even my twenty two year old self!) is this:  Remember that life is full of do-overs.

Whenever you feel like you’ve ruined your life for good, or that something is irreparably broken (your favorite purse, your confidence, your heart), remember that you WILL have a do-over.  You can do something DIFFERENTLY the next time.  Because life is full of next times!  The trick is just to recognize the next time when it happens, and try something new.  Sometimes it takes lots and lots of do-overs to see that it is even a do-over, and even more do-overs to figure out what is best to do.  We are all living a Groundhog Day, of sorts (if you haven’t seen it yet, RENT the Bill Murray movie).  

One of the hardest things about being twelve is that so much of your life is NEW.  It is ALL the first time. So you just have to believe me that there is ALWAYS a next time.  Maybe not with the same friend, or same date, or same employer.  But the situation (whatever it is), WILL happen again, and you WILL be smarter, more experienced, and more capable of moving through it with grace and style.

And know that wherever you are, there are always lots of amazing women looking out for you and wanting the best for you. 

What’s a piece of advice you wish you could give your twelve year old self?


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