Letter to 13 Year Old Veronica

Dear Veronica,

I understand how angry you are right now. Grandpop is gone and it's the summer before your first year of high school. Grandpop's death was the first significant one in your life. I'm so sorry, but he won't be the last. However, up until this moment (aged 25) his is still the most difficult. I know you can still smell the hospital. I know you still feel his stubbly cheek from when you kissed it visiting him in the hospital. Those feelings stay. The gut wrenching hurt and hole in your heart stay too. But you know what else stays? Every memory you have him. I promise you, I swear to you, I still remember him taking us to Burger King on half days. The hats in the back of his car, how we always made him put on his seat belt. The chocolate covered donuts he always had for us. The smell of smoke. His smile. I remember all of it. That's because of you, kiddo. You held onto all of those as if they would disappear in a second and I thank you for it. 

I'm not going to lie to you, the next four years are going to be rough. You're going to be hurt a lot but you're also going to find your best friends. The people who will always be there for you when you feel like complete and total crap. And don't worry, we keep Chrissy and Kait. We'll always have Chrissy and Kait.

If you ever feel like you're missing out socially in high school, just remember your best friends go to different schools and you'll see them on the weekends. And honestly, prom is not that big a deal, trust me, you won't mind not going. No matter how many people say, "You'll regret it", well it's been almost ten years and I still couldn't care less. 

Another huge change in your life is going to come in your senior year. You'll know it when it happens. Believe me when I say this, you'll get through it. It will seem like the end of the world, everything does at your age, but it's not. You will grow up and all of this, all the hurt you feel, all of the self-hate you have will slowly taper away. Little by little, chip by chip, you'll find your true friends and you'll realize they love you because you're nerdy and weird and caring and sweet. 

Listen Veronica, you feel very deeply. Things hurt you more than they would the average person. I understand, it still happens to me. Keep waking up, keep getting out of bed and whatever you do, always keep writing.

Peace, Love, and Cinema kiddo,

-25 year old Veronica