Power of WordsI started writing a letter to myself.

It’s a little complicated, so stick with me.  It wasn’t just me writing a letter to me. It was me-now writing a letter to me-then. It was 50 year old Linda writing a letter to 25 year old Linda.

At first it just said “Dear 25 Year Old Linda, you’re an idiot.” But then I worried that 75 year old Linda would write 50 year old Linda a letter calling her a moron and then the three of us would get in a brawl and 25 year old Linda would have an unfair advantage, having more brawn than brain, and 75 year old Linda who is wise but wizened, would get her ass kicked.

That just didn’t seem fair. I mean, how could I make money on that? The spread would be terrible.

Don’t get me wrong – 50 year old Linda isn’t above using some unfair tactics when necessary, but I’m getting ahead of myself.  So without further ado, I present to you:

The Top 10 Things 50 Year Old Linda Would Tell 25 Year Old Linda That Might Surprise Her (Her Being 25 Year Old Linda, Not 50 Year Old Linda)

1. Don’t be above using some unfair tactics when necessary.

(And by that I mean, don’t miss the opportunity to slip a joke in there when you can.  But humor is a totally fair tactic. Also, this really isn’t a Top 10 thing, this is me making a stupid joke that I have just lost points for by explaining that it’s a stupid joke. Dammit!)

2. You know how teen-you and even early-20s you had drama in your relationships? Sometimes jealousy,  frequent crying, occasional silent-treatments, etc.?  Well, guess what? 50 year old Linda still pulls that crap.  I guess the pressure is on 75 year old Linda to finally get her shit together. Help me, Obi Wan Kanobi. You’re my only hope.

3. Remember how 25 year old Linda wanted to make herself pretty, which required effort? So, so much effort.  You thought that by the time you were old and had firmly snagged a man, you could drop the pretense. You know… quit shaving your legs, finally let that mustache grow out, buy your entire wardrobe from the Hanes Her Way catalog, wear sensible shoes. Oh, it sounded glorious.  Just glorious.

Who knew that 50 year old Linda would still want to be pretty, only the amount of effort required to achieve that would increase tenfold? But here’s where the brilliance of the Grand Design works in our favor because at least 50 year old Linda’s vision is failing so she smiles in oblivion walking around with lipstick that looks like it was applied by a palsied squirrel. Sweet mercy.

4. There will be a company called Google. Take two minutes to laugh at the stupid name and then gather all the cash you can lay your hands on and buy stock. Sell your first husband’s pot plants if you have to.

5. You’re broke now. That’s hard. 50 year old Linda gets that. You are working really, really hard to resolve that broke-ness because you want to do stuff for your kids, you want them to have piano lessons and birthday presents, maybe a vacation now and then. It’s understandable to pursue growth in income when you’ve bought hundreds of frozen pot pies 4-for-a-dollar for years when you really hate pot pie. You probably think all jobs suck and so you might as well sell your soul to Jack Welch and suffer the job-suckage at as high a salary as possible.  Well, you’re an idiot. It’s a trap!  Turn and run – pursue something you love, something that feels worthwhile. Don’t chase a paycheck, that’s its own kind of dead end.

6. You’re not fat. Or maybe you are. How do I know where you currently are on the Kirstie Alley Roller-Coaster Diet curve?  Enjoy the ride. Well, enjoy the downward whooshes and try not to cry in fear when you’re climbing the hills. Never give up – ride that roller-coaster with panache. Keep your chin up – mostly because it minimizes the whole double-chin effect.  Lastly, don’t even TRY the McGriddles. You’ll love them and then it will be bittersweet every time you have to drive past a McDonald’s before 10AM. Trust me on this.

7. I know you’re tired, 25 year old Linda. You’re working 6 days a week, you have these two little kids, and the laundry never ends. You figure it will get better when they get older. Stop being an idiot. It’s like a relay-race and the difficulty-baton gets passed from infanthood to toddlerhood to preschooler yadda-yadda all the way up to teenagerhood.  The most difficult stage of parenting is the one you’re currently in. Period. Hang in there. It’s worth it.

8. I really don’t have any other things.

9. God, why do I do this where I set the expectation for a list of ten things before I write the list? How can I know how many things I have before I write the list? I can practically hear 75 year old Linda calling me a moron. Bitch. (Pretty sure I can take her, don’t worry.)

10. That McGriddle thing is a real tragedy. Probably worth mentioning twice.

So there you have it.

And now that I’ve imparted to you that you’ll still be a tired, overweight, insecure drama queen who goes through life craving McGriddles, maybe I can add one more bonus nugget of wisdom – don’t wait so long to ask for the Xanax, kid. You’re going to need it.



25-ish Year Old Linda

25-ish Year Old Linda

50 Year Old Linda
50 Year Old Linda