Tuesday, June 29

Things I'd like to tell my 19-year old self

1. It's okay to make yourself happy.

2. Go to more movies with your brother.

3. You are really, really funny. That is going to get you through so many things in life that are coming. Seriously. You even crack yourself up.

4. Gramom is going to start experiencing the early stages of Alzheimer's soon. As you go over to visit, pick berries and sew with her, talk to her more about her life. There will be a time when she won't be able to tell you anymore. Treasure this time with her.

5. You are not fat. You are athletic and strong, with long legs. You are beautiful.

6. You have an immense book collection. Reading is part of the answer. I think you know this. Could you save some of the finer, older editions for me because I use them now in my studio?

7. Don't let dad pick your jobs for you.

8. You're onto a good thing with those 4 rentals for $4 for 4 days from the video store. All those foreign movies are going to open your eyes to the world.

9. Keep writing in those journals. Your poems are beautiful.

10. You do not have to try so hard to get people to like you. The ones who are right for you will feel natural.

11. Dad doesn't understand you. He never will. Your efforts there are wasted. Put your energy into your own choices.

12. You've discovered drawing and painting and sculpture. Pretty soon you will decide to go to college for it. You are really, really good at it.

13. Enjoy living near your best friend. Pretty soon she will go away to college and never come home. You will spend years driving 8 or 6 hours in the car to visit her. It will never be like now. Go ahead, walk over to her house, throw pebbles at her window. Stay up all night giggling. Listen to her practice piano. Go on more road trips.

14. Don't listen to people who say you shouldn't be so exclusive with her. That's okay. You just found your closest friend forever.

15. Pay attention when mom gardens. One day you'll have a garden of your own and some more tips would not go amiss.

16. Enjoy sneaking out. One day you'll have your own house and there won't be the need.

17. You have enough money with your job to move out now if you want to. You could. And if you did, you would be okay. You have a fine mind and you could figure things out.

18. Your wardrobe is amazing. You have courage. Velvet rocks.

19. You take amazing photographs. Thank you for learning how to use a 35mm camera.

20. Speak the courage of your convictions to dad. Explain yourself clearly. Ask for what you need. You probably won't get it, but the practice will not be wasted.

21. Follow that feeling inside that tells you when to get away from people. Some people just drain energy. It's okay not to be nice to everyone.

22. It might be a good idea to pay attention when mom goes thrifting and flea marketing. The bargains are all around you in a way they will never be again, because Antiques Roadshow is going to come and raise prices everwhere. 

23. You want to travel. This is the key for you. This is not a waste of time or money. You are worth it.

24. Ask yourself what you really want. Do it. This is not a sin.

25. Selfish is actually not a bad word. It just means knowing yourself. And that's okay.

26. In 3 years you will go to Italy and backpack with a friend for 3 months. Enjoy that friendship with her because after that trip, life steps in and you will both go your separate ways. Also, on that trip, you do not need to pack so much.

27. Always use condoms.

28. You will not have acne forever.

29. Stay out of the sun. Do not put on baby oil.

30. The way things are now, is not how they will always be. This is all temporary.

31. Mom is wrong when she says you have an exercise addiction. Leaving the house and going for a run while watching the stars at 11pm at night because it's your only allowed coping mechanism for dealing with rage is not an addiction. It's really, really healthy.

32. One day you will be happy.

33. Stop using the blow dryer and flat iron on your hair. It is beautiful when it dries naturally.

34. Take a deep breath before dealing with difficult situations.

35. Mom is an anxious person. Take her terrors, her anxiety and her advice with a grain of salt. Hers isn't the only way.

36. Your hands are not too big.

37. You don't have to smile when men tell you to smile. 

38. Guys aren't really worth your time right now. They're not going to give you what you need. Be selective. Live your life.

39. You are resilient.

40. When you are upset, you freeze. Deep breathing really helps with that.

41. Drink a lot of water every day.

42. It is very clever for you to have figured out that both movement and nature heal.

43. You are the only one who can tell you what to do.

44. You are the best.

45. Anything is possible.

46. And I still love the tattoo you got a year ago.

I got the idea for this list from andrea at Hula Seventy. Her list is here.