Dear 18 Year Old Dana

Life is a beautiful journey. To date, you have had some licks. Some hurts. Some disappointments and you have handled it all very well. As you leave home for Kent State University, stay. Finish your studies. Go to graduate school. Do what God called you to do. Do not get distracted.

You love hard. You love fully. Completely. Men will be infatuated with you. They will break up with girlfriends, move to your city, leave their wives. More than a few will want to marry you but only three will have the nerve to utter it out loud. You have never wanted to be a wife so do not become one. When you were a little girl, you said all the time you would never get married. Hold on to that. Wife has too many limitations, restrictions, idiotic expectations. You will be grossly unhappy with the institution because it has too many restrictions on your personage and men who desire to be husband lack the freedom needed to be your man. Men who want to marry you, will want to own you and you must have complete autocracy over your life. Do not spend any energy trying to convince yourself of anything differently.

You must absolutely do what you want to do, when you want to do it. You have no place. Don’t try to force yourself into one. It will be to small. Save your energy. Any man who thinks he can conquer or subdue you is either grossly arrogant or genuinely naive. Because you know more about you than he does, save him a heartbreak.

Right now, you do not want children. Thoughts of marriage and children make you itch but when you are 30 years old, good and grown and self sufficient God is going to tap you. You have a son that needs to be born. At 36, God will tap you again. There is a very special little girl you are to birth. Keep the children, not the men. Do not spend anytime entertaining any thought about these people being companions for you. That is not the role they are to serve.

Provide love for your children and create a village that will support, honor, love and cherish them and I promise you that they will be exceptional humans. Your daughter has a very special person that will come into her life just when she needs him to.

Allow him to be who he is to her and for her. Do not get in the way.

You are steady. Rock solid. You make good decisions. Trust your gut. Continue to walk in your convictions and follow your own compass. Continue to have those very interesting conversations with your Creator and listen. Cultivate your spirit. Talk to your ancestors. Vibe in your own being.

You will meet amazing people along the way. Enjoy them.

Your parents will die very early in your life. Treasure them while you can. Your father is a very complicated man. Love him unconditionally. He needs you more than you can imagine.

Enjoy your life baby girl. Enjoy music, food, wine, beautiful places and hot and heavy with the person your heart desires.

Finally, laugh until your stomach hurts and tears roll from your eyes, dance like everyone is watching, make love deeply and fully, sweat our your hair, raise a generation of greatness and remember you are your ancestors dream. Do not disappoint them.

~Dana Lena’


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