• Noelle Gordillo

A Critical Love Letter to Myself

Artwork by Nadezhda Ryan

Dear Noelle,

I love you...but sometimes I don’t.

I love how you can immerse yourself so deeply into creative projects, but I wish it wouldn’t take you so long to start them.

I love your different colored eyes, but at the same time, I wish they were both just green.

I love the way you sing, but I just wish you did it more. Can you figure out how to make that happen?

I love how comfortable you are speaking with people and sharing your personality--how about being comfortable in your own body when in these situations? Stop being overly critical of how you look in that pair of jeans--it’s exhausting.

I love how focused you can be in class or while listening to a friend-- why can’t you do the same when you’re alone? If you did, maybe you’d do something more important with your time instead of going on your phone. Taking time listening to yourself could lead to you singing, writing, or reading more. Just a thought.

I love how deeply you care for people, especially romantic partners… I just wonder what kind of confidence would exude from you if you only just gave some of that love to yourself.



This fickle love is only evident in one aspect of my life and that is the relationship I have with myself. I guess I wonder why this is true-- why can’t I just love myself without having mixed feelings involved?

It’s complicated. Most relationships are, but just cut yourself a break once in a while. I’m not saying you should ignore possible ways to better yourself, but maybe turn each criticism into a challenge.

An example: Noelle you are being too lazy today (not horrible, could be better)

An (improved) example: Noelle, why don’t you go outside, write a song and do something of importance to you?

See? Minor changes. It’s all about the way we speak to ourselves--we must be careful in how we phrase things just as if we were talking to a friend, trying to encourage them. My letter doesn’t accurately reflect this caring language, in fact, it’s pretty condescending and harsh. But, I realize what changes I need to make now.

Hopefully, in this new year, I can be a little bit kinder to myself, while still being honest.

A revised version of my letter:

Dear Noelle,

Although it may be hard to say I love you without ‘but’ right now, I know that with time, you’ll get there. Writing this piece to yourself just proves that you’re self-aware and ready to make necessary changes to better yourself and take time to prioritize the activities you cherish. And for the conscious effort to do so, I love you.

Wow, I actually got one...Here’s to--hopefully--many, many more.



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