30 Things I Wish I Could Say To My 18-Year-Old Self

1. Stop worrying so much about who likes you or doesn’t like you.

2. Quit stressing about prom. You’ll go with the guy you dated on and off, and even though you hate his guts right now, you’ll look back on those pictures years later and smile.

3. College isn’t as terrifying as you think.

4. There will be this stupid thing called Snapchat, but it will never replace the beauty of pictures in the moment. So never stop taking those.

5. You will fall in love again, more than once. And each time it will be terrifying and beautiful and nothing like what you imagined.

6. You will be broken way more than you’ve ever felt before. You world will shift upside-down and you won’t know exactly how to get back up, but you will. You always do.

7. You are stronger than you realize, even now.

8. Social media isn’t everything. And won’t be everything.

9. Yes, eventually you will get rid of that terribly ugly car. But sometimes you will miss it and the memories.

10. You will learn how to forgive. And this is a blessing.

11. There are far bigger plans for you than what you can imagine right now.

12. You and mom will still fight, but you will start to understand a little more of why. (And as much as you’ll hate this, it’s because you’re more similar than you think.)

13. You will watch people you love go through terrible things. Sometimes you’ll know what to say, and your words will fill pages, but sometimes you won’t. And this is okay. Just be a comfort. Just be there. That’s all you can do.

14. You can’t change people. Not then, not in the future. They have to change for themselves.

15. You will travel to different cities, dance your a$$ off at concerts, and have moments of pure bliss, better than anything you imagined right now.

16. You won’t ever stop being an over-thinker. Disappointing, I know. But embrace it. It has made you a person who cares and loves very deeply.

17. Yes, you’re still emotional as hell. No surprise there. But you will learn that your emotions are your strength and you will bless others with this.

18. You will date a guy who treats you like sh*t, but it will be a lesson learned.

19. You will break a boy’s heart, but not on purpose. And this will teach you humility.

20. You will travel out of the country, try amazing food, see incredible sights and ruins and paintings and buildings that will take your breath away.

21. You will be blissfully drunk on your twenty-first birthday, surrounded by friends in a crappy apartment that feels like home.

22. You will fail at plenty of things.

23. You will always have a chance to start over.

24. You will get a tattoo, an ear piercing, and a sense of sass. These are beautiful things.

25. You will graduate college and cry while still in your cap and gown because you did it, you made it.

26. You will battle injuries in your athletic career, you will be disappointed in yourself, but you will realize that life is made of more than just success and stats.

27. You will lose friends, but you will also make friends that you never thought you would, friends that understand you on the deepest levels, that make you laugh and cry and love yourself.

28. You will love your family, want to kill your family, then realize that they are the most wonderful people you will ever have.

29. You will grow into your own skin and discover who you really are. And then you will own that identity.

30. You will be okay. And you are okay. Right where you are. Right now. So breathe, keep doing your best, and enjoy just being. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

Marisa is a writer, poet, & editor. She is the author of Somewhere On A Highway, a poetry collection on self-discovery, growth, love, loss and the challenges of becoming.

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