Letter to my 8th Grade Self

My dear blogger friend Maggie posted a letter to her 8th-grade self. And I couldn’t help but join the fun!


Dearest Beloved Amy Sauder, who I’ve been —-

Breathe. I know your heart is racing from the crazy adventure that’s just begun from this breaking of the time-space continuum. I’m not sure what the consequences will be, but I only hope they make the world a little brighter a little longer. Don’t quit dreaming, about mermaids and pirates and faeries and dragons and gypsies. You’re gonna need that large imagination. There is something more. I know you wonder. Keep reaching for more. You can have it.

You’re in for alot of surprises. You’re going to lose alot. Your closest friends. Your church. Your hope. Your faith. You’ll be trampled on and you’ll trample on others. It won’t be pretty. In fact I wish I could take it all back and tell you exactly who to have grace on and who to run away from. But let me say this – your heart is big and your hope is big – I know you’re trying to figure it out. I see you.

You’re beautiful. I know you don’t know that, but one day you will. And I hope you learn that a little sooner. Don’t be so hard on yourself. Don’t shatter your beauty with the striving. You try so hard. It’s okay to rest. And there will be people you can open up to. People you’d never expect. In fact your best friends are the people you least suspect. I won’t even tell you who your best friend is now, because it’s the greatest surprise of all – but let me say, you know her now and are in for such an adventure together.

Keep writing. Keep playing school. You like both of those still and you’re actually pursuing them both as a career. Neither is what you think it is right now, but you’ll figure it out. And you’ll keep figuring it out.

If I could send you anything with this note, it’d be a fun hat. You need that right about now I think.

Want to know who you are now? You don’t have any pets (would you believe your mom does, though?!), but you have a mannequin. She’s quite fun, she’s your muse. You are still figuring yourself out, and that’s okay. You’re kinda old and still single and kinda okay with that. Weird, huh? Life has broken you. But you’re coming together again, piece by piece. You get through it…in all that you face in years to come, I want you to remember that you get through it. And the other side if beautiful. You’ll travel the world and you’ll travel your heart. You’ll trust too much and hope too much, and it’s so perfect I’m not going to take it away from you. Your tears are precious, you can let them out. You’ll find safe places. You’ll find safe arms. And best of all, you’ll find dangerous stories. Don’t be afraid.


—with love and hugs and wishes from Amy L Sauder, who you become



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Dear My Future Husband

Dear My Future Husband,

Here’s a few things you need to know if….

also known as, “Directions to our Ever After”

(Or are you the cliché that doesn’t read directions?)

Start with Once Upon.

Cross the bridge, go under and around and walk the ledge.

Pay the troll’s riddle toll.

Keep the ghosts away and the monsters safe.

I’m great at dreaming. I’m great at imagination.

I’m working on doing. I’m working on implementation.

Placing your right hand on the maze wall isn’t the answer.

Do extra chores sometimes – remember, I’ve read 1,492 blogposts claiming family will do that to support my writing. Don’t dash my hope in the internet.

I like lots of ideas. I’m learning to like realities.

I used to love change. I wish you knew me then.

I’m learning to love change again. Be an integral part of that.

Take me on a roadtrip. It’s probably the only thing on my bucket list, to drive without a destination.

Challenge me – to morph and laugh and feel (when I rationalize) and rationalize (when I feel) and get out of my head and get out of others’ heads.

Nourish me – I’m vulnerable and fragile, because I’ve granted you more strength to destroy me than any other person.

Let’s be gypsies and royalty and peasants and clowns and carnies and faeries and nymphs and mermaids and dragons and ninjas and pirates and unicorns and mad hatters and martyrs and lovers and quarrelers and beasts and tramps and heroes and villains and nerds and abstracts and night mares and dreamers. And when we’re done with that, let’s be boring.

Let’s pretend a lot, but never pretend we’re in love.

Teach me to dance. Understand I’ll never learn.

Find the balance between keeping me grounded and letting me soar.

Lead our portion of conversation in large groups (any more than 4).

And hold my hand or put your arm around me or stay very, very close.

Play games. The fake kind, like Risk and Sequence and Bang and Wii.

When I get flowers at work and my coworker says “Do you have a special occasion?” I want to say, “No, I have a wonderful husband.”

I prefer cozy to open floor plan. I prefer crazy to prim. I prefer artsy to classy. But I’m prone to bouts of both.

Let’s be weird, but not too weird. Mmk?

Kiss me every morning and night.

Eat breakfast for dinner.


Enjoy family get-togethers.

Eat more watermelon than we should in one sitting.

Take lots of pictures of meaningless moments that mean everything.

Read adventures that are bigger than our life. It’s okay, it really is.

And once you’re done reading this, throw it away and be you and let me figure out who you are and how we can make life together by studying each other and not some paper. I’m learning that, too.



P.S. You can also read “Dear Amy’s Future Husband” written by her friend Yasmeen.

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