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  • Tara R

Letter to My Younger Self by Meghan, Duchess of Sussex (and Queen Real Housewife of Santa Barbara)

Dear Younger Me, I am writing to you from the future! The gift of time has given me such perspective. There’s so much I want to share!

First off, congrats! It's a girl! I know, you’re already thinking how much fun it will be dressing her up in liberty prints, romantic ruffles, frilly frocks… I ALSO know that your SIL made you cry over a "row" about tights. Oh, Megs, if only I could have been there for you! I would have told you to let it go, to not sweat the small stuff.

Because, I'm gonna let you in on little secret – this is NOT the last time you will be crying about children’s apparel. Sure, putting clothes on a human body seems simple enough, but with a daughter, nothing is as it seems. But you've got this. Now, some advice from your future self:

My top 9 tips on the struggle of dressing a daughter:

1. Enjoy the early years. At first, dressing the little darling is a treat. After all, you carried that little princess (bad word choice?) for nine months -- you earned the right to gussy her up, or down, however you see fit! You are stylist numero uno, the Jessica to her Meghan, the arbiter of all hues and hemlines. Then, faster than you can say paid-endorsement, things shift! One minute you're strutting out of Bonpoint with three months' worth of hand-smocked clothing, the next you're paralyzed as your brain registers the first whiff of noncompliance from your doe-eyed next of kin.

2. Beware of seams. One day, you'll be mid cuddle-sesh with your pooh-bear angel child, when she is suddenly aware of an innocent seam in a pair of plush leggings that she mistakes for a fresh razor blade. Watch your pretty little face; her jerking leg can pack quite a punch.

3. Trust the professionals. You'll soon discover that your daughter does not, under any circumstances, like pants. Or sleeves. Or any hollow sheath intended to protect her sweet limbs from the elements. How on earth will you be able to laser her one day if she ruins her skin at this tender age?! You will wonder this, but fear not, I'm from the future. And Aestheticics Montecito finds a way.

4. A phase is just a phase. One day, she’ll want to wear nothing but Elsa! Then, nothing but sweatshirts with reversible sequins. Then, only that hoodie with the Shepard’s Pie stain on the sleeve, from the time Harry brought her to The Cat N’ The Fiddle on Highland without asking you first. (He NEVER does that again.) But, do not worry! Try to talk her out of it, but, as your future self, stop and heed these words: Use force when necessary. You may crush her independent spirit, blah, blah, blah, ... but she can’t be on Bravo looking like a freak.

5. Garner sympathy. That's right, know this angle! "Woe is me" is the mom of any tween-age girl looking for a simple tee-shirt. There is a distinct feel, shape, length, weight, and texture that must be found. You’ll ask her to describe what she means, but her replies will range from a shrug, to an eye roll, to a “not that.” Megs, NOW is when you should firmly put your foot down -- (unless there's paparazzi present, then you should let yourself be dragged, bleary-eyed, through the labyrinthian aisles of the 7-12 department because "Stars -- They're Just Like Us!") Normal!

6. Request that Urban Outfitters get a liquor license. One day, she’ll want to try things on. Then, and only then, you’ll come face to face with the fresh hell that is a dressing room with your Junior. Things move fast in there, and listen, I know it might seem like the perfect time to be reduced to tears. But...wait for it... She will beg you for high heels. (You will beg her not to make you a young grandmother.) If there is no bar, search your purse for errant chocolate.

7. There's no such thing as too short! She’ll have a Prom and need a dress. You will splurge -- take her to Saks, to lunch, make a day of it. When you ask her what she is looking for, she will not know, other than knowing resolutely that it can’t be something picked by you. It will take 4 hours, 5 minutes and 10 arguments to pick a single item of clothing. But do NOT take the tags off! I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but she won't even wear it. You're welcome!

8. Inventory your stuff! One day, she’ll ransack your closet and "borrow" your clothes, and you’ll never be able to find anything again. I’m here to tell you to dry your eyes; you are NOT crazy! You did NOT just give it all to The Real Real.

9. Take lots and lot of pictures... Then, suddenly, one day, she'll wake up, get dressed and not need you, or your advice, or your things, and you'll marvel at her grace and her poise. You'll be in awe of her; she is, quite literally, your Queen. She'll say "how do I look?" And you will choke up. In fact, you will dissolve into a puddle. The truest, best cry of your life. That's motherhood, young Meghan. In the end, you may regret the tears you wasted on tights. Save the waterworks for bigger moments. Trust me, I mean you, they’re coming.


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