Take a Moment, Teens and Parents

I want you to take a moment. Right now.

I want for you to think back over all of those hard things that have happened in your life, and I want you to be so proud of the way that you have survived. You are a survivor.

You are not alone in experiencing trauma, and it is through our pain that we find our empathy and that we find our purpose.

When I was growing up, I was mocked---- mocked for being so short---- and it hurts to write (even still) that I was mocked for having hair above my lip, a mustache as a little, ethnic girl. The incessant bullying from that stayed with me for years, and I even shudder now to think about it. I wouldn't take a second back of those moments though. I now show up for kids and for teens who are different. I now know what it is to survive and to thrive- and to handle my lady hairs through waxing. Sheesh. I'm so glad I got the memo as I got a little older.

When I didn't make the cheerleading squad in 9th grade, my identity was shattered. I had been the captain of the squad in 8th grade, and when I didn't make the team in 9th grade, I knew I had the ability... but I didn't have the correct body type... I quickly turned to binge eating and long naps every afternoon. Would I take those days back? Absolutely not. Did I learn strength and grace? Oh yes. I also continued with my passion of cheer by joining a travel team that supported all shapes and sizes, and I had a blast with that group through all of my high school years.

My stories could go on and on. Divorced as a young woman. Abused. Shattered.

I'm guessing your list goes on and on as well, but my darlings, know this. You survived. Now it is your time to heal. Now it is your time to thrive.