Now that the sad post is behind me, I am going to write the fun one – the one involving fantasy and alternate realities.
If Kiley would have lived, she would have turned 21 years old this year.
In my fantasy, I am my daughter’s best friend. Kiley is in college, and almost done with it. She loves her brother Cade and the rest of her siblings. She gets tired of Colby’s dad jokes, but gives them a courtesy laugh anyway.
Kiley has told me that she might be in love, and she wants all the advice I can give her. I can’t wait. (Cracking knuckles.)
- Love is awesome when it doesn’t first announce its presence. Sometimes, you see a guy, and he sticks in your head. You don’t know why. He might be cute, but he might have a weird walk. He might not be the smartest, but he might make you laugh. He might not be sure about his future plans, but he likes talking to you anyway. Some sort of instinct tells you to stick around, and you do. Then one day, you might go to a drive-thru for burgers when you feel a burst of something warm and attention-demanding in your chest.
- Love doesn’t always come at the same time for both folks. He might say ‘I love you’ first, or you might say it first. If he treats you well and he makes you happy – stick around. Love might turn on like a bright light when you least expect it.
- You cannot guarantee another person’s behavior. Don’t sit there – at 21 – and expect that you will find Mr. Right one day and that he’ll be perfect for you forever and that he’ll never hurt you. Life isn’t scripted that way. You might be with someone for 20 days, 20 months, or 20 years before he tells you something that changes everything. I know that sounds scary – not being able to guarantee someone else’s behavior – but let me tell you, it isn’t; it’s great news. It means that even if you do your best – or your worst – you cannot control what someone else will do. So, take a deep breath and relax. Be as kind and as loving as you can be. If things don’t work out, know that you loved as best as you could.
- When you find someone and you are with them for a long time, you might think that you can finish their sentences. Maybe you can. But guess what? You should NEVER finish someone else’s sentences. Because people change; they change their minds and their opinions. If you don’t hear the changes, you won’t grow with them. You might find that one day, your love will grow out of love with you.
- Don’t think you know everything about your love and that he can never surprise you ever again. It takes years for us to get to know our own selves. One day, your husband might tell you something about his past that might blow your mind. It might not be a secret, but it might not be something they’ve ever thought much about. It might answer questions you didn’t even know you had.
- If you can find a reason to laugh while you are fighting with your love, then that thing isn’t worth fighting over.
- Sometimes you and your husband won’t be on the same page about sensitive matters. Don’t angrily fight over those things.
- It is time to leave when he hurts you more than he loves you. It is time to leave when he hurts your children. Sometimes, divorce has nothing to do with love (wise words someone told me) – meaning that you might love him, but that he isn’t good for you anymore.
- Don’t court stress, and don’t let your husband do it, either. Courting stress makes your immune system break down. If there’s a problem, get upset, find a solution, and live with the consequences. Court happiness instead.
- There’s a good sad song for every heartbreak. Listen to one and repeat and cry – the singer will be good company. In My Dreams by REO Speedwagon is a good song about unrequited love. If You Leave Me Now by Chicago is a good one about working things out. Don’t Turn Around by Ace of Base is a good one about putting on a brave face and moving on while standing in front of the man who hurt you.
- Reach out to your loved ones when you are hurting. They’ll always be there.
That’s my advice, baby girl. I’m sure I’ll have more things to say. You know where to find me if you have any more questions.