Danielle Brooks wrote a powerful letter to her teenage self. Her advice is a must-read.

Actress Danielle Brooks recently penned a remarkable essay to her teenage self with spot-on advice for the young and young at heart.

In her must-read essay for Refinery 29, the fun-loving "Orange Is the New Black" and "Master of None" star covers everything from the getting over crushes to the importance of family.

Brooks gets fizzy at the 2017 Film Independent Spirit Awards. Photo by Randy Shropshire/Getty Images for Perrier-Jouet.


Her most powerful words of wisdom center on self-love and knowing your worth.

Like this sage advice that belongs on every dressing room mirror, bathroom scale, and machine at the gym:

"Love your stretch marks Danie. They are the roadmap of your strength."

Brooks walks the red carpet at the 2017 Film Independent Spirit Awards. Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images.

Or the way Brooks assures her teenage self she will find clothes that fit, flatter all of her curves, and inspire others to rock theirs too:

"One day you will shock yourself by how many women you inspire through your fashion and your willingness to be open about your journey with your body. Continue to show people how to live unapologetically in their magic."

Brooks (right) and a guest snap a selfie at the Empowering Women Summit at the United Nations in New York City. Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Lane Bryant.

And her beautiful reminder to herself — and all of us — to stay strong, patient, and compassionate, even when it would be easier not to:

"You are different, Danielle. You are not an ordinary 15 year old, and that is okay. That doesn’t make you better or less than anyone. But what you must not do is dim your light. You have a lot of love to give and believe it or not, it is not as easily accessible for others to give the same. People have a lot of hang ups that will make them guarded, but continue to operate out of love. It will always win."

Brooks looking flawless at the 23rd Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at The Shrine Auditorium. Photo by Charley Gallay/Getty Images for TNT.

A longtime advocate for body positivity and self-love, Brooks offers encouragement and inspiration on her Instagram too.

In 2015, she shared a badass workout selfie wearing capris and a sports bra, something Brooks never thought she'd have the confidence to do.

"Today my inner being told me to turn up the notch on my self-love. I should not be ashamed of my body. I'm not a walking imperfection! I'm a Goddess," she wrote.

Hey 💜rs, Today I decided to do something I've never done before: Go to the gym with my SHIRT OFF!! 🙊 I thought I'd share why this is significant for me. I've always wanted to do this but have felt shameful and have told myself "until my body is perfect I'm forbidden." Today my inner being told me to turn up the notch on my self-love. I should not be ashamed of my body. I'm not a walking imperfection! I'm a Goddess. Secondly, I'm a confident woman! That doesn't stop once I take off my spanx. Lol Sometimes it's a struggle. Sometimes I don't like what I see, but I have the power to change the way in which I relate to my body both physically and mentally. Today I woke up feeling beautiful and motivated to love myself and take care of the ONE body that I've been given. I'm not saying World take your shirt off, twist it round your head, spin it like a helicopter🎶, (lol) I'm saying everyone live in your confidence. One Life. One Body. Take Care of It. With 💜, DanieB #voiceofthecurves #yesmythighstouch #lovethyself #beautyinandout #goddess #imabadshutyomouth #ivebeeneatingmygreens #thickathanasnika

A post shared by Danielle Brooks (@daniebb3) on

In 2016, Brooks modeled for Lane Bryant's #ThisBody campaign along with stars like Gabourey Sidibe, Ashley Graham, and Alessandra Garcia.

Brooks spotted her glamorous photos for the campaign all around the city. The actress could barely contain her excitement — and why should she? She totally killed it!

My first solo billboard in New York and it's in the middle of Times Square!! Leaping with joy! #voiceofthecurves

A post shared by Danielle Brooks (@daniebb3) on

Even a beautiful, talented woman like Brooks has lapses in confidence, just like the rest of us.

She shares those moments too, inspiring herself and her fans along the way.

I had to check in with myself real quick. Hope someone out there feels me. 💪🏾#voiceofthecurves

A post shared by Danielle Brooks (@daniebb3) on

We'll all have moments of doubt, but it's how we work through them that matters.

From our bodies or careers to our relationships, we all second-guess ourselves. But just like Danielle Brooks (and young Danie too), we can dig deep, find our confidence, and keep trying. Or, as she wrote in her poignant letter: "Stay fearless and keep swimming."

GIF via "Orange Is the New Black."

Courtesy of Macy's

Brantley and his snowman

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"Would you like to build a snowman?" If you asked five-year-old Brantley from Texas this question, the answer would be a resounding "Yes!" While it may sound like a simple dream, since Texas doesn't usually see much snow, it seemed like a lofty one for him, even more so because Brantley has a congenital heart disease.

On Dec. 11, 2019, however, the real Macy's Santa and his two elves teamed up with Make-A-Wish to surprise Brantley and his family on his way to Colorado where there was plenty of snow for him to build his very own snowman, fulfilling his wish as part of the Macy's Believe campaign. After a joy-filled plane ride where every passenger got gift bags from Macy's, the family arrived in Breckenridge, Colorado where Santa and his elves helped Brantley build a snowman.

Brantley, Brantley's mom, and Santa marveling at their snowmanAll photos courtesy of Macy's

Brantley, who according to his mom had never actually seen snow, was blown away by the experience.

"Well, I had to build a snowman because snowmen are my favorite," Brantley said in an interview with Summit Daily. "All of it was my favorite part."

This is just one example of the more than 330,000 wishes the nonprofit Make-A-Wish have fulfilled to bring joy to children fighting critical illnesses since its founding 40 years ago. Even though many of the children that Make-A-Wish grants wishes for manage or overcome their illnesses, they often face months, if not years of doctor's visits, hospital stays and uncomfortable treatments. The nonprofit helps these children and their families replace fear with confidence, sadness with joy and anxiety with hope.

It's hardly an outlandish notion — research shows that a wish come true can help increase these children's resiliency and improve their quality of life. Brantley is a prime example.

"This couldn't have come at a better time because we see all the hardships that we went through last year," Brantley's mom Brandi told Summit Daily.

Brantley playing with snowballs

Now more than ever, kids with critical illnesses need hope. Since they're particularly vulnerable to disease, they and their families have had to isolate even more during the pandemic and avoid the people they love most and many of the activities that recharge them. That's why Make-A-Wish is doing everything it can to fulfill wishes in spite of the unprecedented obstacles.

That's where you come in. Macy's has raised over $132 million for Make-A-Wish, and helped grant more than 15,500 wishes since their partnership began in 2003, but they couldn't have done that without the support of everyday people. The crux of that support comes from Macy's Believe Campaign — the longstanding holiday fundraising effort where for every letter to Santa that's written online at Macys.com or dropped off safely at the red Believe mailbox at their stores, Macy's will donate $1 to Make-A-Wish, up to $1 million. New this year, National Believe Day will be expanded to National Believe Week and will provide customers the opportunity to double their donations ($2 per letter, up to an additional $1 million) for a full week from Sunday, Nov. 29 through Saturday, Dec. 5.

There are more ways to support Make-A-Wish besides letter-writing too. If you purchase a $4 Believe bracelet, $2 of each bracelet will be donated to Make-A-Wish through Dec. 31. And for families who are all about the holiday PJs, on Giving Tuesday (Dec. 1), 20 percent of the purchase price of select family pajamas will benefit Make-A-Wish.

Elizabeth living out her wish of being a fashion designer

Additionally, this year's campaign features 6-year-old Elizabeth, a Make-A-Wish child diagnosed with leukemia, whose wish to design a dress recently came true. Thanks to the style experts at Macy's Fashion Office and I.N.C. International Concepts, only at Macy's, Elizabeth had the opportunity to design a colorful floral maxi dress. Elizabeth's exclusive design is now available online at Macys.com and in select Macy's stores. In the spirit of giving back this holiday season, 20 percent of the purchase price of Elizabeth's dress (through Dec. 31) will benefit Make-A-Wish.You can also donate directly to Make-A-Wish via Macy's website.

This holiday season may be a tough one this year, but you can bring joy to children fighting critical illnesses by delivering hope for their wishes to come true.

via 1POCNews / Twitter

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