An Open Letter To My 26 Year Old Self

Dear Issa,

At 26, you might be thinking that you are going through the hardest time of your life right now- you’ve gotten your heartbroken (and probably vice versa), you’ve constantly been trying to figure out where your place in this world is and you’ve asked yourself way to many times about “what is that one thing that is going to make you great in this world?”

You are still young, probably not as young as you once were or ever will be, but your heart and the things you love will always be your driving force whether you decide to blog, run a business, be a wife, a mother, a friend or simply a human being- and although you never feel like you are enough, you actually are.


There are so many things in this life that you have yet to experience: loss of a loved one; debt and taxes; raising a child or worse, a teenager; a critical health condition and God knows what else, which means that there is so much more room for you to grow, learn and therefore become a better person.

Forgiveness is a trait that you must practice openly especially if you expect others to forgive you for your own shortcomings. A little lesson on people: lots of them will come and go in your life and if they are meant to be in it, God (or life) will find a way for them to come back- that is, if you want them to. But if you no longer want them there, the universe must have it’s reasons for that, as well. So learn and practice forgiveness even if sometimes you cannot forget but if you can, then you have been blessed with a graciousness like no other so never feel like you have sold yourself short. Again, you are enough.


Always be careful with your words whether written, spoken or in thoughts. Same goes for your actions. There are some things that can never be unsaid or undone- you should know, you are constantly haunted by these things. So practice what you preach at all times.

Never let anyone make you feel less than you are especially when you are trying to be better. Never let anyone take you or the love you have to give for granted because you know yourself and your heart and you know what you deserve and when it is time to draw the line. Accept that it is OK to give up sometimes or to change your mind but do so with caution because there are things in this life that you can never take back.


Write. Always write and never stop because that is something you are actually OK at. Your head is always so full of thoughts, ideas and feelings and they deserve a permanent place in this world- so give them the spot that it deserves. Remember, the goal is not to live forever but to create something that actually does.

Try to live a life of no regrats (yes, I know how I spelled it). Yes, you’ve lived a life full of mistakes but these mistakes have made you stronger and this strength will be useful one day- for yourself and for the people around you.


I know it feels like being with someone, getting married and having kids are the most important things in your life right now but if it hasn’t or will not come for you yet, do know that if it is in God’s will then it will eventually come. Ironically, as you read this blog entry 20++ years later, you will scoff and say to yourself, “I don’t know why I was in such a hurry anyways. Being young and single was actually pretty great!” Remember, we never really know what we have until it’s gone so cherish every moment.

Never apologize for your choice of hair color, how you choose to live your life or for forgetting to remove your hair tie during photo shoots. Just do you and the goals you’ve set so highly for themselves will eventually materialize because you have the heart, drive, passion, dreams and you have never ever let yourself fall short. This is probably why you stress yourself out so much because you want things too much- that is ok. One day, everything will be OK.


So as you live another year in this world, do know that you will survive. You’ve gotten through it so far so why should you ever stop trying now? People are living harder lives- ALWAYS BE GRATEFUL. Always thank God for the tribulations that He has faced you with because He has given them to you for a reason! (Thank Farrah for this reminder, ok?)

Again, you are enough even when the world or other people make you feel like you are not. You are enough and please stop thinking that you are not. Carry on with your dreams, your plans, your life- carry them for yourself and not for anyone else. Everyone will have their own opinions about you and even if they aren’t always pleasurable, they do not know what’s going on in your life just as much as you do not know what is going in theirs.

Never lose your fire and positivism even if it is SO EXTREMELY hard to do sometimes. You always have and you will continue to survive.

Happy belated birthday, you idiot!



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