Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Decade

I love, love, love the New Year. I'm all about fresh starts, new beginnings, and reflecting on how far you've come. (For example: Bad hair + a year's worth of growth=pretty good hair. I'd call that progress!)
Ten years ago, I was a 14 year old girl who thought it sounded more grown up to say she was 15. I was living on a boat with my parents and about to arrive in Georgetown, Great Exuma Island, Bahamas. In 2001 I had my first boyfriend, bad hair, and clothes that were even worse.  I dreamed of living in New York and working at one of the many magazines I read so voraciously.  I volunteered at a local Bahamian school once a week, where I thought to myself being a teacher would totally suck. I read a lot, loved to write, and spent a lot of time looking out the window and wondering what life had in store for me.  

Flash forward ten years:  I’m a 24 year old woman who thinks it sounds more grown up to say I’m 25. I’m visiting my parents in Georgetown, Bahamas, which I still consider home after all these years. That boyfriend from 2001 is engaged, but not to me, and my hair and clothes have improved drastically.  I lived in New York and worked for a wonderful magazine, but realized that it sucked the rat race just wasn’t for me.  I’m a teacher now, and look forward to the daily drawings or leaves from the playground that are gifted to me by tiny, generous hands. I read a lot, love to write, and continue to dream about the wonders that life has in store for me. (So far, so good.)
In one of my emails today, it asked what I would write in a letter to my 14 year old self.  I thought a letter might be a little much, especially since I wouldn’t go back and change a single thing or event that led me to where I am today. Maybe a few postcards with little gems of wisdom for the last decade would be more appropriate. Such as:
-Don’t cut your hair off. Bad.Idea. You will look ugly.
-Don’t dye your hair. It will go gray soon enough and then you’ll have to dye it.
-Really, just don't mess with your hair, ever.
-If you want to eat three grilled cheese sandwiches for lunch in college, you are going to have to drag your (fat) ass to the gym. I’m not really sure what you expected to happen with that one.
-Enjoy being single. (You might as well, because you will be for the next decade or so, give and take a year or two.)
-Stand up for yourself when people are mean to you.
-When you have extra money in your bank account at the end of every  month, that is not the amount that you are then allowed to go and spend at j.crew. Save it!
-Go out a lot in college, even if you have to be at work or in class early the next day.
-Don’t get too hung up on boys. There’s plenty of fish in the sea.
-Repeat this to yourself everyday: I am awesome. Because, who are you kidding? It’s true!

I hope that you all are looking forward to the new decade with anticipation and hope, and looking back on the past with gratitude and wisdom. I hope that your resolutions have less to do with your relationship status or numbers on a scale and more to do with opening your heart and strengthening the grit of your character.
What would you put in your postcards to your younger self? And what are you looking forward to in the next 10 years?





7 comments:

Every Little Thing said...

I would just really like to tell my younger self that others' opinions don't matter and to just do my own thing, but I know my younger self wouldn't listen! Ten years ago, I was 18 and starting college and honestly, in a really good place in life!

Happy new year!

Fabulously Awkward said...

Very good nuggets of wisdom. As sucky as growing up is, at least you can appreciate that it made you into the awesome chick you are today.

Happy New Year!

Kristin said...

I love this one: Go out a lot in college, even if you have to be at work or in class early the next day.
:)
Happy 2011!

Happy Frog and I said...

As someone who is 14 years older than you I think you have learned plenty of lessons that I wish I had known back then, so well done! Aiming to be happy and to bring happiness to others is my big thing now. Hopefully for how ever long I have left on this planet to! Happy New Year!

style'n said...

wow I love reading what you would tell your 14 year old self and I think I would say many of the same things. Was it hard to think of those?

Haughty by Nature said...

Thank Naina! They weren't hard to come up with-all I had to do was look at some awkward family photos while I was home for the holidays, and all of the repressed memories came flooding back!

Haughty by Nature said...

Thank Naina! They weren't hard to come up with-all I had to do was look at some awkward family photos while I was home for the holidays, and all of the repressed memories came flooding back!

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