“Happy 20th,” I wrote in my journal on February 11th. It was the first entry in months. “You no longer need journals filled with sad crap to make yourself feel okay.”
And it is true. I had some spare time during the break after my exams, so I rummaged through my old stuff back at home and had a look at the things I wrote about six years ago… and jeez, I really did love to cling to the negativity.
But I do not connect with that anymore.
So, in the latest journal entry, I compiled a list of 10 things I would say to the teenage me if I could go back in time and talk to her:
- it is okay to feel the way you feel
- you do not need to seek anyone’s approval to be who you are and to like what you like
- your parents are right 90% of the time
- there is no need to be scared because things WILL work out
- everything you’re experiencing is gonna be an important factor in shaping your personality
- school is not a friend-manufacturing place
- you should trust your intuition a little bit more
- it is okay to focus on your feelings and emotions and be a little selfish from time to time
- you have to learn to be patient – good things and good people WILL come around (probably when you’re least expecting them)
- and last but not least, I am damn proud of you
Truth is, I dreaded this birthday. But now I think I like being 20.
Look at my life. It’s surreal. It’s everything I used to wish for while blowing out the candles on my previous birthday cakes.
I have people I am proud to call my best friends. I moved out of my freaking hometown that I felt was suffocating me for so many years and I’m more than okay. I like the decisions I’ve made. I like what I’m studying. I no longer perceive myself as someone who’s somehow worse than everyone else, as someone lacking something that everyone else seems to have.
Today, I am finally good enough for me. And maybe it’s going to sound too proud, but I’m pleased with who I’ve turned into. I feel like my life is on the right track. It’s going somewhere.
I’m excited to discover where that somewhere is.