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An Open Letter to the Girl Who’s Terrified of Looking Back

Your past isn't as terrifying as it seems

It's human nature to eradicate anything that we think is displeasing to us. We are naturally prone to look at the beautiful things in life. We cover up our scars. We like to hide our mistakes. We are ashamed of our flaws. We don't like looking back in the past. What most of us fail to realize is that these are the things that shape us to become who we are today.

I'm telling you now; don't be afraid to look back. Your past no matter how horrible it is has shaped you to become who you are today. It has shaped you to be stronger and wiser. Life is a bed of roses now but people fail to see the thorns that lie beneath the soft petals. They are part of what makes life beautiful. No matter how traumatic and terrifying your past may be, it's part of who you are. You can't deny that. You are not the same person you were before because of that past.

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When it comes down to it, I think you're not afraid of looking back per se rather you're afraid of the effect that looking back will have on you. You are shaken at the core to think that you will turn back into that same person. Know this: You can only be affected by people, events, and whatnot if you choose to be. You will only become who you were before if you think you are capable of doing so. You don't want to be that girl before, don't let yourself be. You don't want that thing to happen again, then prepare and make sure it doesn't. I know what you're thinking right now. This writer is naïve and thinks we live in a perfect world where the past won't repeat itself. Well here's what I have to say to that. Being prepared and deciding for yourself that these things won't happen again, is a whole lot better than just sitting around and waiting for bad things to happen to you. Yes, life is full of surprises. We never know what it has in store for us and we never will but at least if bad things happen you can tell yourself you were more or less prepared for it. There will be no more nights of over thinking. There will be no fear to brace whatever challenges are thrown at you.

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Your fear of your past is only holding you back from the greater things in life. Not recognizing your chip in your shoulder is not going to get you far in life because whether you like it or not your past will come back to haunt you. Now it is up to you whether or not it will seep into your life on your own accord. It is better to confront your fear rather than to have it hit you when you least expect it to. It will be painful but it will be rewarding. It is easy to forget the past. We do it everyday. We lose memories without even realizing it but I advise you not to take the easy route. Take the difficult path. Look back and face your past head on. Look it in the eye and see that is not your enemy. It is your friend. It has given you more strength and beauty than you will ever realize.

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Your past only matters to let you see how far you come. Whatever bad things happen to you and no matter how horrible you were, what's important now is that you are not that person anymore. You have overcome all the trials that were shoved at you. You became a better person because of it. So don't be terrified of looking back. Be terrified of what the future has in store for you. Be terrified of what's to come and prepare for it. Embrace your past and let it remind you of the strength you posses inside of you to overcome whatever else lies in your journey ahead. Life is not easy and it never will be but it is up to you to decide if your life will be beautiful. It is up to you to think if your past is something to be ashamed of or something to fully accept, reflected upon and learn from. The decision is all yours and my dear, believe me when I say it always will be. So don't be afraid to take a stroll down memory lane. It's not as terrifying as you think it is.

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About the author
Danielle Bernabe
Candymag.com Correspondent
Whether it’s through books, fashion, a plane, or my own imagination, I’m always on an epic adventure. Sure, I get lost quite a lot but hey it always makes a great story!
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