Thursday, July 1, 2010

Dear McCall, age 18

Dear 'About to Go to College' McCall,

This is it. You're about to set foot on one of the greatest adventures you'll ever know: college. Your world as you know it is about to be rocked in more ways than you can possibly imagine.

During the next five years (Yes, five. Deal with it. You're gonna change your major one semester shy of graduation. This will be scary and you will feel a slight sense of failure here, but don't worry- it all works out in the end.), you're going to meet the greatest friends you'll ever know. They'll come in all shapes and sizes, be all ages, and be from all walks of life. Some of them will prove to be truer than others, some will thoroughly disappoint, and some you will still talk to daily twelve years from now.These few will become a part of you and will in many ways mold you into the girl you'll be when you're all grown up and doin' your thing.  But, you'll learn something about yourself from each of them. You'll find that you're very, very lucky in the friend department.

Don't take French. Or at least if you DO take French, don't skip class. This will not end well. Take my word for it. The same goes for ballet- don't register for this class; it'll be the only class you drop in college. Save yourself the frustration and just say no. You'll only get your feelings hurt when your teacher tells you that you're too short to ever be taken seriously as a ballerina. Yes, I realize you're not trying to be taken seriously and are only trying to get a fine arts credit, but it will hurt your feelings nonetheless.

As for boys, there will be several. Some will be good; one in particular will be very bad. I wish I could tell you you'd one day look back on this relationship and say you're glad you went there, but don't hold your's not gonna happen. You will get your heart broken; you'll also realize there's someone out there who is so much better for you and will be so much better to you. This too will pass.  On the good side, there will be a few who will teach you to be better. Your hubby will appreciate them one day, whether he admits it or not. They'll teach you to love with your whole heart, back down when necessary, and choose your battles very carefully. They'll love you just for being you and help you to see that you are going to be ok, no matter what life has in store: past, present, and future. Be good to them even though they're not your Mr. Right. For one day, you WILL find him. He is out there, although right now he's thinking you don't exist.

Spend as much time with your girlfriends as you possibly can; one day not too far from now you'll be willing to give just about anything to have so many people you love living just down the hall from you. Take advantage of this as often as possible. Stay up late giggling, skip class to share secrets, and ditch the boys for the girls. Those boys don't matter; these girls do.

Don't waste time hating your hair. Twelve years from now, you're still gonna hate it. So any time you spend on this will simply be wasted. Spend that time instead doing something fun, like taking random trips to Starkville, putting on puppet shows for Summers, asking Rebecca to teach you how to  play the guitar, creating something with Ashley, playing pool with Jennifer, or realizing you and Kara have so much in common that it's scary.

Write, write, and then write some more. Don't spend the next five years just writing for class. I know being an English major means writing a few papers a week, but stop whining and write some more anyway. It's what you've always wanted, remember? Ok, so take off the blinders, stop making excuses, and write just a little everyday, even if it's for no one but Y-O-U.

Call home more. I know that you and your mom may not always see eye-to-eye right now, but one day you will. And one day you'll regret only calling home when you needed something and not just to hear her voice.

Stop wasting time questioning your desire to be a teacher and just do it already. You won't regret it. I'd be lying if I said you'd enjoy it every single day, but it will lead you to some wonderful people whom you will truly love. Those kids will make you happy, will make you better, and will bring out the best in you.  And you'll get to talk about books and writing all day, and you know you like the sound of that.

Hold true to who you are. I know there will be people and things that tempt you to be someone else and not hold true to your core values, but get a tight grip on what's important to you and refuse, above all else, to let go of who you are at the heart of you. Ignore these people and turn away from these things. Run if you have to....

Wear your skinny jeans every single day and eat all of the chocolate chip cookies you can stand. Trust me. That twenty-two year old body of yours won't hang around for forever, and even though it'll be hard to admit and you may even deny it at times, you'll miss it one day.

Above all else, have fun.....and try to learn a few things.   Get ready, little one, you are about to have some of your greatest adventures.  You're about to become YOU.

Keep your chin up and enjoy every stinkin' minute,

'No longer a Kid' McCall

In  case you're wondering, I was inspired to take this journey down memory lane by this blog. Check it out and get inspired too...and let me know if you write your own letter after reading mine. I'd love to hear what you have to say to you.


  1. Wow! That was amazing! I agree....write girl!

  2. I loved this! I had to giggle at the ballet thing -- she told me I was bow-legged! Your family is beautiful -- hop/e we can catch up soon!

  3. I can't find the words to describe how reading this blog made me feel! It brought back so many memories! Of course, you'd be able to describe it perfectly....that's why you're the writer, and I'm not! :) Love you!

  4. Love it! Can I grab one of the photos for the MFAeA blog--I'll give you credit and send everyone here to read this great post!


Cool people leave comments. Comments make me happy. You do the math.