What Will You Write To The 16-Year-Old Version Of You?
If there’s anything you would write to the 16-year-old version of you, what would it be?
After being home for more than a month now, I get the chance to dig up the well-kept photos of me in my mother’s collection. As I look into the photos, I couldn’t help but think about what kind of person I have become. I was staring at this girl, who I know so well, the thought of this girl doesn’t have any idea what will happen to her in the future. How she will end up as the person she is right now.
If there is anything I would write to the 16-year-old version of me, it will be just one thing – don’t reach for success but for happiness.
I used to imagine myself being successfully grown up (grown up- right) working my way up to the job with a praisable title, I don’t think there’s something wrong about it. Right after I daydream of making myself to be the person I used to want to be, I will get afraid. I used to stress the life out of me about how the fuck will I get myself out there, up there? To be successful?
What was and continually taught to us, specifically in the culture I grew up, I have to be a successful person if I want to be happy. The funny thing is, I was dipping my finger in the wrong sauce, I was taught to aim for the wrong goal.
If I have an advice to the 16-year-old version of me, this is what I will tell her.
Don’t be afraid. No honey, it will not be an easy journey. Pack a good size of self-esteem to feed yourself in time you need to face the people out there who will surely tell you that you are not good enough. Don’t forget to bring enough clothes to protect yourself from the negativity that will come to your way. Remember to add buckets of smiles to give out to the people who might need it. Never lose hope when you failed into trying to do something that is unusual in the society you will live into. Don’t pack knee pads, you would look ridiculous, instead, get yourself an open mind, you will get more than bruised knees, your heart will be broken not only by the person you love or will love but the people who you barely knew.
Make yourself confident for all the decisions you will make, your instinct wouldn’t be the most accurate compass you can bring with you. Your instinct will fail you, but never ever hate yourself for making wrong decisions. It’s an old saying but it’s true – you will learn from your own mistakes. Yet, that doesn’t mean that you should decide on something without thinking, don’t just think smart – think with your heart on your other hand and confidence on the other.
Never hate yourself, throughout your journey, you will meet a lot of people who will do that job for you. Love yourself, love yourself more than you love the very first boy you fell in love with. One night, you will lie awake until three in the morning, feeling alone. And that’s okay, as long as you have accepted yourself for who you are, never doubt your capabilities. You will know that you got yourself back up for the next challenge you have to go through.
The confusion is like the worst permanent allergy you will ever have. It will knock you off, lead you to wrong turns in life, make you doubt yourself. But don’t panic, my love. That’s completely okay, these wrong turns you will take will not take you to the place you want to go. These wrong turns will take you to a room full of something you will learn from.
When you are feeling like the weight of the world is too heavy to carry, take a break. You don’t have to hurry on finding yourself nor being the person you want to be. You will never always in control of your life but you can run it at your own pace.
Lastly, aim to be a happy person. Set your mind to reach for your own happiness, you can never be too selfless, too generous, too bubbly, too positive, too trying hard. Please not only make yourself happy, bring happiness to this world. Never hate the world we live in, instead make it a happy place. Aim to be a happy person, there you will find the success that people told you to reach for.
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