Dear 11-year-old Disaster....
By Charlotte Bennardo
Geez. Eleven is tough. And you know what? The next years are going to be even tougher. There will be bullies, a move to a strange town where you fit in less than where you are now, times when money is scarce, and too many days when you doubt yourself and withdraw. At eleven, you don't know where to turn, who to talk to, or what to do. Sometimes, it won't feel like it will get better.
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But hang in there, kid. You're stronger than you think. You have an inner fortitude you'll learn to trust. All that poetry you're writing now? Well yes, it's pretty bad, but you'll get better. You'll learn your craft. You WILL get books published. You'll have wonderful- and terrible experiences- which you will use in your writings. Don't be afraid to dream big or work hard. And even though you may think it, others are feeling the same way. So say hello to that strange kid who keeps to himself so when you meet up years later, he thanks you for your kindness. Don't take to heart the mean things the popular crowd says because they don't know you, and after graduation, they disappear. Take Russian history because the teacher, Big Daddy Clingon, is a cool hippie and he also teaches creative writing. Ignore the English teacher who trashes your writing because for some reason doesn't like you- you'll be a published writer, something she never achieves. Middle and high school won't be even a major part of your life, so you will survive and move on. You will find your way. It won't be perfect, but then not many things are. True perfection is found in never giving up your dreams.
See you in a few....