Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Dear 18-Year-Old Self

A few weeks ago, Jordan pointed out that almost all of my posts are some sort of list.  Yes, I know that “list it out” is one of the four blogging commandments, but you also need to consider number five: “spice it up and keep ‘em guessing.”

The Type-A in me has blatantly ignored this last policy and just continues to list and bullet everything and all things, day after day.  In fact, when I sat down to write a post about my incessant listing, the first thing I came up with was: 10 Things You Should Never Write in a List.

And no, the irony of that does not escape me.

So I’m going “back to the basics,” as one would say, and bringing back paragraph format.  While I'm dabbling in the basics, I thought it'd be only appropriate to write the oldest post known to blog-kind: A Letter to my Past Self.  Because if I’m doing it old school, I’m doing it right.

Dear 18-Year-Old Nicole,

This is 23-year-old Nicole.  You know, the five year later version of you.  The one people keep asking you about on college applications and internship resumes.  Kind of weird, I know.  Hold it together.

I'll say, you’ve done a pretty decent job so far.  I’m glad to see you’ve decided that cornrows weren’t really your look, and I’m super excited to tell you that your fake front tooth is still here, five years later!  And despite your dentist’s warning that eating apples might rip it out, you eat one literally every day anyway.  So yes, you still live life on the edge.

I just have a few things to chat with you about, really.  They’re all pretty basic so I’m a bit surprised that they weren’t immediately obvious to you already.  But hey, at least you got the cornrows thing under control.

First things first; you might think I’m going to tell you to stop stressing so much.  Well sorry, but I’m not.

All that stressing you’re doing about grades and networking and your future will pay off, from what I’ve seen so far.  I’m not saying you can’t tone it down a bit.  (None of your future employers have yet to mention that General Chemistry test you failed.)  And I’m also not saying that it isn’t important to figure out when to take things seriously and when to let them go.

The thing is, you still haven’t figured that out yet.  So in the meantime, be “that girl” who starts studying for a test two weeks out, because even when you don’t know where you’re going, your hard work makes getting anywhere easier.

Also, why in God’s name can’t you figure out that a guy who doesn’t treat you right isn’t worth it?  I’m not saying that you’re Princess Peach, only worthy of men who shimmy through pipes and jump over fire pits to get to you.  But no one needs to be with a guy who only brings you down.

No, he’s not going to change.  (I really don’t know where you got that idea to begin with.)  And no, it’s not something that people should accept.  There are guys out there who do the opposite of constantly bring you down; they lift you up and make you better.  I promise, you’ll meet a great one.

But even if you didn’t, it’d be better to be alone, frankly.  So cut it out.

Another thing: you know how you don’t budget?  That really hasn’t changed much.  So I guess I’m sort of begging you at this point to please try it out.  I get that it’s hard and numbers are boring and TGI Friday’s five times a week is more fun but for both of our sakes, just give it a shot.

Also, despite what you think, you really don't know very much.  And I hate to tell you, but the only things you know for sure five years later are that you don't know very much, and the hell on Earth that is breaking a lease.  The best advice I can give you is keep your mind a little more open and your mouth a little more shut.  Trust me.

And last: wear sunscreen.  Just because I think that’s how you’re supposed to end things like this.

23-Year-Old Nicole

P.S. - Also, when you send grocery receipts home in exchange for pocket change, for the love of God, take out the one for beer.  How did you get into college, anyway?

Tuesday!  We're making progress.

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1 comment:

  1. I love those letters to our past self... I did one recently and it shows how much you've grown. We all think we know so much whn we are 18... we know very little... life is a process ♡