Letter to My 16-Year-Old Self


To Alicia, aged 16;

Hey kid – how’s it going? I’m you – at age 21. I just wanted to write you a letter, and talk to you about what may be going on in your head right now regarding junior year of high school and your future. Everything will be okay; I swear.

School; I bet it seems like such a drag and a big issue right now. You try so hard to do good yet for some reason, you can’t focus. Maybe there’s something going on in your head that you can’t figure out. Maybe you just daydream constantly of being somewhere else other than school; where you can no longer stand to be around some of your fellow classmates.

Maybe it’s bothered you that you lost a classmate and friend to suicide.

Maybe it’s bothered you that you’re now at a new school with new people, having to make new friends once again even though you already had one friend at that school.

You’ve done so well in school; you managed to get your life together for the rest of your sophomore year spent at your last school, and you’ve done so well during the first half of your junior year at your new school. Things were tough at first but you managed and for that, I am so proud of you kid.

You’re on to the second half of your junior year and I want to warn you – things will get tough. That Biology II class is doing your head in; it’s so hard and you feel like you’ve bit off more than you can chew by taking such a strong class. That college history class as well; yikes bro! You definitely have a challenge with that class, being stuck with a load of people that are irritating the life out of you and making you question why you’re even dealing with such an annoyance, why you’ve chosen to sign up or this. You’ll love the teacher – he’ll become one of your favorites I promise; but that class will do your head in – as well as that Biology II class; yikes.

But you will be okay; I promise. I want you to remember that you must show them all that you can make it because you will. Your mother is stern and firm about grades; you may sometimes think she doesn’t understand your pressures like all teenagers seem to think, but when you get to 21, you’ll understand that she only had your best interests at heart all along and you can’t thank her enough. Like all teenagers, it upsets you that she’s taken away what you love – the cell phone, the iPod, the computer; everything. But like I said, you’ll understand it when you get to 21. Like I said, mom always had and still has your best interests at heart; she’s the absolute best.

It may not seem like it now and you may be even wondering how, but you’ll make it to college. You’ll have a plan in mind at first; go straight off to a four-year university, get out in 2017 and be done with it. I’m warning you now; things won’t go to plan and it won’t be for financial purposes – but they won’t go to plan because of you. This isn’t meant in a bad way, but last minute during senior year, you’ll make a hard-left turn – and that hard-left turn, those 2 years, will be the best platform you need to launch into the person you want to be.

Those friends you make along the way, that group of people you’ll eventually hang out with – I can warn you now that it will be the biggest lesson on learning who really has your back and who you can trust. As a teenager, you don’t understand this I’m sure and you think you’ll be friends with people forever but trust me, it will be such a lesson – and the lesson will be learned at a time where you’re learning to spread your own wings and preparing to fly away. You will be hurt at first but not for long; you will survive and be the one who is always so much stronger.

Also, that major you have in mind – it will change when you make that hard left; and I promise you that it will be the best, most rewarding change you will ever make in your life. I won’t tell you what it is; you’ll find out when you get here.

21 now; it will be stressful and tough when you get to this point, but it will all be worth it come May of 2018. You’ll find out why I said 2018 when you get to this point; but remember it doesn’t mean that you’ve failed or messed anything up. It’s fate that’s brought you along this path; you’re doing exactly what that big heart of yours is meant for – helping others.

There will be times over the next few years where you’ll feel a bit down and lost – even now at 21 there are still times – but just remember your purpose. Remember your dreams, remember that you have a plan and you know what you want to do.

Remember that you won’t fall

Remember that you won’t break.

Remember that you’ll always survive and be the one who’s stronger.

Remember that ambition is your weaponry when life throws things at you.

Just remember that you’re only human. Get ready to learn so much from your mistakes, and get ready to make some more.

You got this kid.

-Alicia, aged 21

***

This post was a bit different, but something I had on my mind as I was thinking about how far I’ve come since high school. Thank you all; see you Wednesday!

-Me xo

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