Just yesterday morning, a dear friend of mine reached out to me. Her oldest daughter is an 18 year-old college student. She is also an amazing young lady on Autism Spectrum . Having grown so much in these past 4 years as a girl with Aspergers Syndrome she wrote a letter to her 14 year-old self.
She has allowed me to share it here for any young girl who feels different and needs this encouragement. What an honor and my privilege.
For the mom raising a neurodiverse young girl… please share this with your precious creative. Let’s celebrate the uniqueness of all of our children and allow our girls to thrive as the people God intends them to be.
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Dear 14-year-old me,
Well. Four years can certainly make a difference, now can’t it? Seeing your face again brings back a lot of memories, y’know. Makes me realize just how much both the world and I have changed. Time is more of a kiln than a river, in all honesty. Life can and will hurt, yes, but as I look back, I know that I wouldn’t change anything.
Hmm? Advice, you say? Well…let me see. What advice could I give you?
Y’know, in all honesty, I’d say that the best advice I could give you is that you’re not alone.
You’re not broken, or defective, or glitched.
You’re not the only one who’s scared by the sound of balloons popping and gets extremely uncomfortable at parties.
Fortunately, plenty of other girls out there have that same wild fuel for the imagination. They too navigate those same issues with feeling as if you need to perform in order to be accepted.
In fact, there is a shockingly high amount of people who will completely understand when you try to scurry off to another room to escape the hubbub. There are so many other girls and boys who get this pacifying and focusing effect that music has on you.
There are countless other Aspies who know what it’s like to be drifting off to sleep and suddenly be murmuring out dialogues, solidifying plots and characters before slumber overtakes you.
They too understand what it is like to be trying to do school and suddenly it’s half an hour later, and you have a doodled battle scene and no progress on school whatsoever.
You’re not a weird outcast.
You are one-of-a-kind rare, but not in your troubles. There will always be someone out there who’s gone through the exact same issues with anxiety and feeling as uncontrolled as you, and they understand what it’s like.
And keep drawing, even though you think you’re no good.
You’ll get to a point one day where you step back, take a good look at your rough draft for a novel and the art you’ve done so far, and you say,
“This is something that could change someone’s life. There are people out there who need this message, and I have the God-given ability to give it to them. To have a character say something that will stick with a complete stranger and motivate them to make the world a better place.”
God has a Vital Purpose for You
You are FAR from unimportant, younger me. God has put you here for a vital, vital purpose.
There will be perfect strangers who will decide to give life another chance because you spoke the Gospel to them, people you have never seen in person and probably never will who will know you as a beacon of light and hope…if only you keep pushing on.
Fight past your own fears and hatred, and fight past the bullies you’ll run into. Neither of them have any right to have any power over you.
Healing & Inspiration for the Young Girl With Aspergers
You are a juggernaut of healing and inspiration: you can’t and won’t be stopped after you get unleashed on this broken world.
You have God with you for every step of the way no matter what. His opinion – not any bully’s, not any critic’s, not even your own – is what matters.
You have so, so much power for good in you because God is your king. Use it. Ignore the voices and fears saying you can’t.
Break Down the Walls of Despair
You have been given a gift like no other: so by golly, go be a juggernaut, and break down those walls of despair and darkness threatening people’s souls.
You are a healer and a warrior so powerful that this broken world tried to weaken you a young girl with Aspergers…but it messed up and just made you even stronger.
Find Your Aspie Army
So find your army to remind you that you’re not alone, and then draw your bow in a world that only knows how to fire slingshots.
You are unique, even when you don’t think so. You are talented, even when you don’t think so. You are never walking your path by yourself, even when you think you are. You are strong, even when you don’t think so.
Leigh is an 18 year-old Aspie warrior who’s also learning how ADHD, SPD, and anxiety can all be gifts. As a college freshman, she is preparing to accomplish her dream of publishing her first self-illustrated novel. She loves nothing more than helping others see how God celebrates their uniqueness.
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