Tuesday, April 10, 2012

My 16-year-old self

Let me just tell you, my 16-year-old self was nothing like who I am today. I mean NOTHING. You can ask some of the very few select people that I recently showed my old high school IDs to. 16-year-old (high school junior) me was a girl with a bad haircut (too short), too much hair product (resulting in crazy curls), braces, and battling bad skin. To say that picture horrified and embarrassed me is an understatement. Yes, it is that bad! What's really funny though, is that between my junior and senior year, I had this really quick transformation. My senior year, I was a hell of a lot prettier, and look like a former version of my current self. But anyway, that's beside the point.

Seeing as I recently stumbled upon my old diary, I actually do have some good advice for my younger self. Granted, I only read about 3 random entries, but still. Firstly, I would tell myself to be selective of the people that I hung around with. There were times in high school when I didn't hang out with the best crowd, and I'm pretty sure that's because I didn't yet know who I was or what I wanted from myself. I was trying to figure that all out, and because of that, I trusted many people that didn't deserve that much from me and consequently, I got in a few situations because of it.

Secondly, my 16-year-old self should be aware that she does not need to follow in anyone's footsteps. I really hate to say this, but neither of my parent's jobs are much to be desired. My father works for Verizon Wireless doing some sort of sales. My mom is a middle school special education instructor. I grew up being told not to fall into either of those professions. I hold a lot of gratuity for my mom--I think that what she does really does matter and is a hard profession, but the salary is not worth the stress. But when the younger of my brothers went off to college, he found his niche in engineering. Consequently, I followed that path because I had heard of the end results--great job, nice salary, etc--with no regards of the means of getting there. That led me to applying directly for UVa's engineering program to which I was accepted. However, I learned early on that it wasn't my niche. To the advice of some deans and professors, I stayed in it far too long and by the time I chose a different path, there was only so much to choose without having to waste extra time. Needless to say, because of this, I am fully aware that environmental science is not my calling but was more of a fall back to a different science degree. My 16-year-old self should have took more time to really inquire as to what it is she wants to do, within reason, that she's good at and could pursue a career in.

Thirdly, I would tell my 16 year old self not to take fitness for granted and to make it a priority. I definitely peaked in my running the next year, but I could have achieved so much more if I really went for it without any excuses. I would tell her not to let it fall by the wayside with the looming days of college, but if she did, it would come back in a heartbeat. I would tell her to continue the community involvement when she ultimately got to college. I would let her know that although out-of-state is a heck of a lot more expensive, that she should choose somewhere that she wanted to go.

I would also tell her not to waste any time on high school boys, because let's face it--they're ALL immature.

1 comment:

  1. Hmmm, your 16 year old self sounds like my 16 year old self. Except that I partied way too much for my age and didn't do any sports after 16. UGH, if we knew then what we know now!! =)