I think at some point in all of our lives, we’ve looked at an old photo of ourselves, cringed and thought… ‘why did I go out the house looking like that?!’ But, I think going through that horrific, ugly stage in your life is a part of growing up, isn’t it? Perhaps not, as nowadays I see young teenagers walking round with a great fashion sense, triple the make up I would only dream of wearing at that age, and they all look good. I just think to myself, you’re 14! You’re supposed to look ugly and have flat hair and no eyebrows! I certainly did that. When I was of that age I particularly loved rocking the blue mascara, eyeshadow and liner look, loving life in my flared jeans and having a mouth full of metal, (I actually miss my braces a lot sometimes!) However, if I could tell my younger self what I know now, I would’ve done some things differently…
- IT’S OK TO BE GEEKY! When I was younger, I was passionate about reading and writing. I adored writing books about the most random things. I remember I would sit for hours at bulky grey computer trying to find the best word art print, and coming up with all of these new ideas and writing long stories about them, sometimes tens of pages at a time. However, I believe just before I started secondary school I lost my love of reading books and endlessly writing, simply because I thought it wasn’t ‘cool’. To this day I am still saddened by this, as I was very fond of reading all the adolescent novels by authors such as Jaqueline Wilson, Louise Rennison, Sophie Kinsella, among loads of others. However, I still presently love to read and write, which is one of the many reasons why I’m studying a degree in English.
- DON’T WISH YOUR CHILDHOOD AWAY. I remember whenever I used to say, ‘oh I wish I was 18 now!’ my Mum would always reply with, ‘don’t wish your life away’. And now I completely understand why. You want to become a certain age, it happens and it’s a complete anti-climax. I’ve passed my 18th birthday now, and if anything I want to return to my school years where I was a naive, innocent girl who only cared about what colour braces to have next. (It was a really hard decision!) My greatest advice is to live in the moment, and to never wish your life away as in many years to come, you’ll realise how quickly it has passed and you would’ve found yourself missing out on many great experiences and not living life to the fullest.
- DO WHATEVER YOU WANT TO DO. I feel like I’m quite the people pleaser and is very easily led. I love trying to impress people by doing things I’m not that keen on doing, and always have done from a young age. However, since I’ve gotten older I’ve realised how pointless that is. As long as you are happy, that’s the most important thing. If you live your whole life trying to impress and please people it won’t get you very far. It’s ok to be selfish sometimes!
- BE A LITTLE MORE INDEPENDENT. It’s only recently that I’ve become more independent. My whole life up until then I have always had to rely on someone (mainly my mum). It wasn’t until recently that I would make my mum come with me to the toilet in public places – ha! However, I wish from a younger age I went off and explored a little more, did more things on my own without the need of relying on others.
- DON’T TAKE YOUR FAMILY FOR GRANTED. The sad reality is they won’t be here forever. I, at times felt like I did take my family for granted, and honestly, probably still do now. It’s important to appreciate your family as they are everything in your life. I’ve always been close to my mum and dad, however there was a period during my early teenage years when I didn’t view and appreciate them like I do now. However, there’s no need to feel guilty as it’s a normal process of a teenager to go through.
- NEVER ACCEPT SECOND BEST. If you can do and achieve better, then do it! When I was younger I didn’t strive for things, instead I just let things happen for themselves. However, what I have learnt with age is that things really do not come to you handed on a plate. Work for your goals, and when you achieve one, achieve them all, and don’t stop until you reach your ultimate goal. Drake is right, you do only live once, *cringes* so make your one chance the best it can possibly be! You do not want to get older and think of all the ‘what ifs?’ and possibilities that could have been. Instead, always achieve the best and be the best person you can be. You’ll surprise yourself at how much you can achieve.
- EVERY DREAM CAN BE A REALITY. People will always try to deter you from what you really want to do, (them people aren’t good people), but don’t let it happen. Even if you have the most unrealistic goal of all time, try your hardest to make it become a reality. If it doesn’t, at least you can say you tried your damn hardest.
- Last but not least – DON’T OVER PLUCK YOUR EYEBROWS!!!!! Learn to love your slugs! Over plucking my brows is the biggest mistake EVER. Naturally, my brows are quite thin but when I was younger I went into overdrive and basically plucked them off entirely and most of the hairs have never grown back. *Cries*. For those of you who are sensible enough to either get a responsible adult or a professional beautician to look after your slugs then I admire you massively! Filling in my brows everyday is such a chore, I would love to be one of them people who doesn’t need to do anything to their brows and they look amazing and shaped and perfect and I’m sad now.
Anyway, I’ve rambled on for way too long, I’m sorry if this is really boring or a massive cliché, but i’ve enjoyed writing it and reliving all of my horrors and tragedies that I have endured. (Basically cringing the whole time!)
Ellen Grace X