Dear Twentysomething: Jennifer from The Beauty of Eclecticism

Hello, Jennifer.

If you could actually read this, you would no doubt believe it was sent by the Devil to mislead you. Trust me, your current religious affiliation is only one of the many things that are going to change for the better in the next 15 years. Eastern Orthodox Christianity is what you’ve been looking for all those years while you were dabbling about with other people’s religions in your spare time from being a rabid Pentecostal. I know, I’ve just confirmed your worst fears, so let’s move on. You’ll figure it out in about 10 years.

First and foremost, Mom and Dad are both going to die before you’re 35. I’m sorry to state it so baldly like that, but I know you’d be relieved to know when the horrible drama of wasting illness will finally be over. Honestly, there’s going to be a lot of losses in the next decade, most of them peripheral, but the funerals mount up after a while. If you could read this, I would tell you to seek Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for our anxiety and depression issues TODAY!! Life doesn’t have to be like it is for you right now, and how I wish we’d known that 10 years before we finally discovered it.

We’re lonely now, you and I, with Mom gone, but it’s not the terrifying, gnawing loneliness you’re afraid it will be. We’re lonely, not alone. God is going to give you a wonderful husband and a beautiful, frighteningly intelligent child. Unfortunately, the only way to get there is going to be through massive student loan debt, and I can offer you no suggestions whatsoever on how to avoid that, but this is why God doesn’t tell us everything the future holds. If He did, we’d go around short-circuiting the only good things in our lives while trying to avoid the bad. Meeting Michael is the best thing that ever happened to us, and as for the student loans, every other college student in the country’s in trouble in 2011—why should we be any different?

Michael. Yes, peaked your interest with that name, didn’t I? It’s not the name you were hoping for. No, it’s not, and you’d better be grateful. I’m talking to a wall here, wasting my breath, and I know it because I have the same heart that you have, but forget him. Yes, HIM! That relationship won’t happen, and it would have been a disaster if it had. Ok, “forget” is too strong a word; we still haven’t managed that yet. He tends to haunt us in dreams occasionally. But if you think unrequited love was tough, you’re going to find out that half-requited love is 10 times worse, believe me! Let him go. He doesn’t even know what he wants, so what he wants can’t possibly be us.

For the love of all that is holy, WRITE! Write much, write often. Never stop writing. How I wish you could write some of the books that we still haven’t written yet to this day! Oh, well; our views have changed so much, we’d just have to re-write them now, if you had.  Still, don’t give up on that dream. We’re not published yet, but book blogging has opened up a whole new world of possibilities for us, and we’ve never been happier with our writing endeavors. As a dear friend, roommate, and maid-of-honor of ours whom you will meet in about 5 years always says, “Just keep swimming!”

Jennifer blogs at The Beauty of Eclecticism and tweets at @JN_CL.

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