Dear Younger Self,
Before I say anything else, I want you to know that even when you hit 18 years old, you will still listen to High School Musical and Hannah Montana. With no shame. Also, One Direction broke up and you still have zero chance with Harry Styles. It’s a shame, isn’t it?
Now, I know you’re used to getting out in kickball with all the neighbors being your biggest obstacle. But that’s just a little, insignificant obstacle that you will face in this lifetime. There are going to be so many times where you face a situation and you feel like you aren’t strong enough to overcome it, you might even blame yourself for getting into a rough situation. Or you’ll ask God over and over and over again, “Why? Why is this happening to me? What’s the point?” But I want you to know that every trial you face will shape you into a better you, no matter what it is. Each person, each situation, each fight, each heartbreak will all teach you lessons that will only make you stronger and better.
There are also going to be small moments where you feel as if you could change how a moment went, or unmeet someone, or know then what is known now. But don’t wish for that. Don’t do that because it’s better for you to find out for yourself in that exact timing. That embarrassing moment will teach you something. That toxic person will show you colors that you’ve never seen before. And knowing what’s going to happen before it happens, is not going to serve you.
And yes, I know that life’s hard. It’s riveting and heartbreaking. Oh, heartbreak. You’ll experience heaps of that. You invest your whole heart into everything and everyone. That’s just who you are and you’ll think it’s a bad thing but I promise you it isn’t. Just because a few people toy with your heart, doesn’t mean you should stop loving the way you do. Your extroverted heart is what makes you so caring and thoughtful, and that is one thing that nobody can ever take away from you.
Oh geez. That boy that you like. The one that you make a fool out of yourself for time and time again. Yeah, he isn’t worth it. He doesn’t deserve you. Staying by someone’s side just because it is in your blood to not give up and always see the good in people is not an excuse. It’s definitely not a reason to stay. The next time someone thinks it’s okay to walk all over you, get up off the ground and walk away before they can even try. You have too much love and too much soul to waste it or give it to someone who won’t appreciate it.
I have to say, you’ve always been someone who has known their worth. Please keep it that way. Of course there are going to be times where you feel like nothing but that just isn’t true. You’ve never been one to settle, and there will be one time where you do, because you are the kind of person who gives a chance. Don’t settle. Never. Learn from the first time.
Spend more time with your parents and value that time. Your mom is your soulmate and best friend; everything she is saying to you is because she is looking out for you and wants what’s best for you. Your dad is your number one supporter and just wants to see you happy. Make them breakfast. Ask them questions about when they were teenagers. Say thank you when they do something for you. Call them and let them know what’s going on. Get to know the people who brought you into this world. If there’s one thing you’ll learn, it’s that while you’re growing and getting older, so are they. You never know when time will run out, and I’m not saying this trying to scare you, but if you spend every moment with your parents like it’s one of your last, you will see that relationship grow and thrive like no other. You will see how pointless it is to fight with them or be angry with them because they won’t let you go out.
Keep writing, keep making art, keep photographing and editing photos. Do not let anyone stop you from doing what you love. You will thrive and soar high above everyone else if you keep up with your passions.
You’ll meet some amazing people. They will see your pain, they will wipe your tears, and they will love you anyways. Never go a day without thanking God for them. Never go a day without telling them you love them.
I want you to know that it’s okay that you don’t know what you want to do. You’ve always said that you wanted to be a teacher but that was just because that’s what you play-pretend to be all the time. That’s the furthest thing from what you want to do though. You’ll figure it out eventually. Maybe you’ll become an author, maybe a graphic designer, a photographer, or even a professional blogger (what a dream). But whatever you do, don’t let anything stop you from doing what you really want to do or love. You will be rejected. You will question everything. But that’s okay, it’ll all be worth it.
Be proud of yourself. Don’t listen to the ones who bring you down because there’s nothing wrong with you, they just aren’t happy with themselves. Remember who your God is because then you’ll always know who you are. Tell your mom and dad you love them every night before you go to bed. Thank your lucky stars.
All the love in the world,
18 year old you