I'm writing to my past self. I chose a specific age. Age 14. The year I was a freshman in high school and focused on social activities and Facebook, not the actual purpose of school. I didn't know a whole lot then, and I had very low self esteem. I'm writing this letter not only as a reflection, but as an inspiration to freshmen everywhere, or people who are looking for their place to shine.
Dear Past Natalie,
There are so many things that I knew now that I wish you knew then. For starters, don't date a smoker. It's simply gross and disgusting. Second of all, don't lower yourself to hang out with people that aren't exactly the greatest people in the world. As you get older, you will begin to have a better judgement of what's the real thing and what's not. You will have great but eclectic friends. Variety is the spice of life and you've got variety believe me.
I know you want a boyfriend, but your time will come. Granted, I'm 19 and single, but that's okay. Know that happiness doesn't stem from having a significant other. That's borderline needy. You don't need a man to make you happy, as much as it's flattering. Your day will come, rather soon with an evil ginger. You'll fall hard, so hard that you land on the ground bruised and broken. You learn and you move on. Down the road, it seems to you that you were being brainwashed, similar to another closer friend that you know. However, know that being hurt is a part of life, and that you needed to go through that to be the person that you are today.
Don't change because some bitchy girl is making fun of you. Yes, you are kind of fat. You will actually lose 20 pounds in a year, eventually heading down a dangerous road. However, being skinny isn't the goal. Being healthy is. For years you will fluctuate up and down with your wieght. Eventually, you will realize that the true goal is simply to live a healthy lifestyle. Of course, you do have an addiction to cake pops and cookies, but in moderation that's totally cool!
Over the years, you will be hurt. By friends, who simply care about themselves. By a boy who can't hear the word no. Your best friend in the whole wide world, Gabriel who is your sassy gay best friend who will always be there for you when you need him, will go to an awesome school in Minnesota. You will miss him, and yet you know that's where he bloomed. You will learn Italian and eventually make friends who actually live there! Maybe you'll visit that's in the cards.
The best advice that I can give you now is to be yourself. You are a weird kid, but that's okay. You'll make wierd friends to go along with that. At the end of the day, kid, you live a good life. Also, know one thing. No matter what crazy bullshit you go through, at the end of the day it will be okay. If it's not okay, then your story is still going on. Be a hero, a leader, a person to look up to by little children. Smile like it's going out of style, and don't do anything half ass. Love yourself, because if you don't then no one else would. Make mistakes then learn from them afterwards. And most importantly, live.
The More Awesome Refined Verison of You!