Solange is gracing the cover of this month’s issue of Teen Vogue and penned a letter to her teenage self, describing life’s ups and downs and how to survive them.
In the letter, which was printed in all lowercase, Solange talked about becoming a mom at 17 and how people would count her out:
seventeen will be the hardest year of your life. it will grow you up almost immediately. you will lose your best friend whom you love so much to gun violence in a single moment, and give birth to a new one within a year.
you will be terrified, and it’s ok that you don’t know what the future holds. some people will count you out because of the decision you’ve made to bring another life into the world so young, but you made the decision out of love and will live with the decision in love.
Solange also credited her mother, Tina Knowles-Lawson, with being the driving force in her life, while acknowledging having served her mom with her share of eye rolling and neck popping:
you should thank her out loud more, too; tell her you value her. roll your eyes and your neck less. it’s not as cute as you think. tell her you appreciate all that she does, for she makes the impossible look effortless. she surrounds you with other black women who do the same. you study them, and will constantly think of all their stories, their beauty, their strife and their stride. they break down all of the archetypes and stereotypes that you see of black women on tv and in magazines, so you don’t trust those anymore. you thank them for re-writing the script before it was ever etched in your memory.
Solange’s Teen Vogue cover is one of three issues dedicated to music; the other two feature Chance the Rapper and Paris Jackson covers.
Read Solange’s complete letter here.