Dear Baby Kayla,
It's April 22nd, 1989 and you are being forced out into the world. It's a month early, but due to complications, you are being born. You're not breathing and doctors say you may not survive. You do. Keep fighting.
It's your first day of kindergarten. You're riding the bus home and you don't remember which bus stop is yours. You don't get off the bus and you are terrified that you may be stuck on the bus forever. Don't worry, your dad is running after the bus and will soon catch up and rescue you.
Dear 8 year old Kayla,
Today is the day that you will fall asleep in class. Your teacher won't wake you up. She'll let you sleep right through lunch and recess. You'll wake up with a hungry stomach and sad that you missed out on playing outside with your friends. She'll never mention it to you. She figures you were punished enough. You'll never fall asleep in class again.
Dear 10 year old Kayla,
5th grade is going to be awesome! You have a teacher who is brand new to teaching. She will be amazing! She has so many fun activities for you and your class to do. She'll read aloud to you at the end of each day, because, like she said, read aloud time is not just for babies. You'll learn to love this teacher. She changes your outlook on school and it'll make you want to be a teacher. This dream does not go away.
Dear 13 year old Kayla,
Jr. High is awkward. You will feel awkward. Your body is weird. Your feelings are weird. Boys are weird. You're going to write a special Valentine to one of the boys in your class and put it into his locker. He's going to share it with all of his friends and they will all laugh at you. You'll feel like you're going to fall down and die. You won't. You'll make it through.
Dear 16 year old Kayla,
I know that things are super hard at home. I know that you're not sleeping much. I know that you don't have a lot of time or focus to complete your homework and all of your teachers will peg you "the lazy kid." I know that you aren't lazy. You would do your homework if you could clear your mind enough to get it done. I'm sorry that nobody around you is asking if you're okay. You will find somebody to help you. It takes longer than it should, but things do get much better.
Dear 18 year old Kayla,
You're an adult now. You get to make your own decisions. You're in college. You're studying to be a teacher. Your dream is coming true. You will go out, you will party, and you will have many fun adventures to tell your friends and children (when they're old enough to hear such things). It will take you awhile, but you will find the balance between partying and schoolwork. Nearly failing Chemistry your freshman year will open your eyes a little bit. :)
What would you say if you could share some knowledge and some wisdom to a younger version of yourself. I'm sure the situations would be a little different than the ones I shared, but I imagine you would speak to yourself in much the same way. You'd revel in good times, you share sorrows, you'd encourage yourself when you're scared and unhappy, and you'd give some advice.
Did you know that you have the opportunity to do the same thing in the life of a child somewhere in this world?
By sponsoring a child through Compassion International, you not only have the opportunity to support them financially, but almost more importantly, you have the opportunity to write letters to this child. You can tell them that they are beautiful, that they are loved, that God loves them, that they shouldn't be afraid, that they should always try their best at school, and that they are going to make it, through every good and bad situation in their life. You can breathe encouragement and love into the life of a child.
What child will it be?
At 11 year old, she is entering her preteen years. I'm sure she feels awkward and needs a lot of encouragement as she enters these precious years of her life.
Maybe little Saran is the child for you.
He lives in an area of high exploitation and abuse of children. He needs love and encouragement so much.