An Open Letter: 29 Thank You's to My Mentor

An Open Letter: 29 Thank You's to My Mentor

To the one who impacted my life tremendously: thank you.
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There are those people who are placed in your life at just the right times. It can be intentionally, or completely by accident. No matter how they entered your life, you know they’ll forever leave a footprint on your life. This is a letter to the person who has impacted my life, and helped me grow into the woman I am today.

Thank you for challenging me always to dig a little deeper, even if it hurts..

Thank you for always being a listening ear, no matter how long I “vent”.

Thank you for being a smiling face, even on my darkest days.

Thank you for your heart of gold.

Thank you for the numerous conversations over “Dirty Chai’s & “1% Vanilla Lattes”.

Thank you for your educator heart that puts others before yourself.

Thank you for wiping my tears of sadness and joy.

Thank you for sharing your family with me.

Thank you for your honest words, even when it’s the opposite of what I wanted to hear (but exactly what I needed to hear).

Thank you for encouraging me to always take care of myself mentally, physically, spiritually, and emotionally.

Thank you for your kindness and teaching me to be kind to others; especially to those who don’t seem “worthy” of it.

Thank you for pushing me to excel in my academics (nerds for life!).

Thank you for your love, when I’ve felt the lowest. Knowing I was loved made all the difference in the world.

Thank you for answering my calls and texts about anything and everything (you know they can come out of left field, and you’ll always reply).

Thank you for sharing your snacks with me at school when I didn’t feel like going to the cafeteria.

Thank you for reminding me about living a simple, less materialistic life; and finding what truly is important to me.

Thank you for allowing me to listen to your joys and troubles in life. I love hearing the latest and greatest about your days.

Thank you for sharing your travel bug with me, and creating dreams of traveling the world one day.

Thank you for continuing to fuel my reading passion and letting me borrow your great reads.

Thank you for modeling for me what it means to be a strong woman who sticks to her morals.

Thank you for proving to me that it’s okay to be upset about something, as long as you don’t take it out on someone else.

Thank you for accepting my weird quirks and still wanting to be my friend.

Thank you for the infinite amount of life talks we’ve shared (I’m sure I owe you a substantial amount of money for all the free sessions you’ve given me).

Thank you for teaching me to keep an open mind, even when I want to resort to my close-minded ways.

Thank you for keeping me up to date on the important events that occur in your life (it is a two-way friendship after all).

Thank you for showing me that a trip across the world can bring you the happiness you’ve desperately needed.

Thank you for being a role model to me, and the older sister I never had.

Thank you for making me a stronger woman of Christ, and guiding me into a more foundational relationship with Him (I will forever be thankful for this one).

But most importantly, I just want to thank you for making yourself available in a time of need. When I needed an outlet and guidance from someone wiser, you were there.

I’m sure there’s more I could thank you for, because you truly have had one of the biggest impacts on my life. I can honestly say that without your guidance and support over the last six years, I would not be the confident woman I am today. Your kindness and friendship will forever be ingrained in my heart. I thank the Lord that He had a plan to bring you into my life. I appreciate you more than you’ll ever know. Thank you for being the mentor I wanted, but thank you for becoming the dear friend I never knew I needed.

Cover Image Credit: Katie Hodgman

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If You've Ever Been Called Overly-Emotional Or Too Sensitive, This Is For You

Despite what they have told you, it's a gift.
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Emotional: a word used often nowadays to insult someone for their sensitivity towards a multitude of things.

If you cry happy tears, you're emotional. If you express (even if it's in a healthy way) that something is bothering you, you're sensitive. If your hormones are in a funk and you just happen to be sad one day, you're emotional AND sensitive.

Let me tell you something that goes against everything people have probably ever told you. Being emotional and being sensitive are very, very good things. It's a gift. Your ability to empathize, sympathize, and sensitize yourself to your own situation and to others' situations is a true gift that many people don't possess, therefore many people do not understand.

Never let someone's negativity toward this gift of yours get you down. We are all guilty of bashing something that is unfamiliar to us: something that is different. But take pride in knowing God granted this special gift to you because He believes you will use it to make a difference someday, somehow.

This gift of yours was meant to be utilized. It would not be a part of you if you were not meant to use it. Because of this gift, you will change someone's life someday. You might be the only person that takes a little extra time to listen to someone's struggle when the rest of the world turns their backs.

In a world where a six-figure income is a significant determinant in the career someone pursues, you might be one of the few who decides to donate your time for no income at all. You might be the first friend someone thinks to call when they get good news, simply because they know you will be happy for them. You might be an incredible mother who takes too much time to nurture and raise beautiful children who will one day change the world.

To feel everything with every single part of your being is a truly wonderful thing. You love harder. You smile bigger. You feel more. What a beautiful thing! Could you imagine being the opposite of these things? Insensitive and emotionless?? Both are unhealthy, both aren't nearly as satisfying, and neither will get you anywhere worth going in life.

Imagine how much richer your life is because you love other's so hard. It might mean more heartache, but the reward is always worth the risk. Imagine how much richer your life is because you are overly appreciative of the beauty a simple sunset brings. Imagine how much richer your life is because you can be moved to tears by the lessons of someone else's story.

Embrace every part of who you are and be just that 100%. There will be people who criticize you for the size of your heart. Feel sorry for them. There are people who are dishonest. There are people who are manipulative. There are people who are downright malicious. And the one thing people say to put you down is "you feel too much." Hmm...

Sounds like more of a compliment to me. Just sayin'.

Cover Image Credit: We Heart It

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Writing Saved My Sanity

Write it all down when you can't talk to anyone.

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I love writing.

I have since elementary school, and I've dreamed of becoming a published author. I started off writing stupid plays in elementary school, then it grew it almost writing a full-blown novel in middle school. I have no idea where that thing went to. It was all notebook paper and bad writing. In high school, my writing was kinda pushed to the side so I could focus on school. When I entered college, I started writing small poems about my now ex-boyfriend.

I was scared to express myself to him sometimes, the intensity of my feelings for him scared me. So instead of telling him, I wrote them down. When I tried to share them with him, he hated it. He thought writing down feelings was weird and creepy. So I didn't share anything else with him. When we finally broke up for good, everything just poured out of me. What I couldn't express verbally, I wrote or typed out.

I always have ideas flowing through my head. They never cease and I wouldn't want them to. Writing gives me an escape, from stress, work, school, or fights. It gives me a place to vent and to be open with everything. This is a reason I love writing for Odyssey, not only has this place brought me amazing friends but revived my love for writing. I'm never without my notebook anymore, I'd get distracted in class by an idea and have to write I think then and there.

I love sharing my more personal writing with close friends, especially my poems as of late. I found that I have a voice for young women who find themselves in a toxic relationship much like mine was. I want to speak out and show them that you can grow from the bullshit. It may take some time, but you will be better.

Writing saved my sanity. It allows me to express myself without having to use my actual voice. Anyone who knows me, knows I hate public speaking. I tend to psych myself out leading up to it. My current projects include writing for Odyssey every week, I'm in the process of trying to continue my short stories, and I'm excited to announce that I'm currently working on my very first poetry book!

Writing has given me so much, and I'm so looking forward to making a career out of something I love so much.

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