I’m twenty-two today. It’s weird. I know I’m still young, and I know people usually feel the need to dropkick me when I complain of otherwise, but it’s still a strange feeling. Knowing that, like it or not, I’m growing up. The other day I was going through my things and I came across an old journal entry. It was 2007, and I was on my senior trip in Paris/ England. I’ve always been a pretty sentimental chick, insanely engrossed in both the past and future, but I was still pleasantly surprised to come across something I had almost forgotten about. At the back of one journal was a letter written at eighteen to my future twenty-one year old self. I laughed, shook my head and almost cried reading my previously written words. I was so different, and I cannot stress enough how innocent everything about me was. Though I was insecure and a worry-wart and even more neurotic than I am now, I was also full of hope and faith and honesty that I’ve lost a lot of by now. More than anything, I wanted to go back and give eighteen year old me a hug and tell her everything would be just fine. I can’t do that, so instead, I’d like to dedicate this blog to showing off/responding to the letter I wrote to me at twenty-one.
Letter to my future 21 year old self (May 2007) :
First of all, I really hope you have at least had your first boyfriend by now. I mean, 18, fresh of out highschool is okay. But 21?? But if you haven’t, it’s okay, just hurry up okay? I hope you’ve stopped being so silly about things now, & falling for the wrong boys. I’m in Paris right now. A balcony in Paris. And I have to pee so be right back. Okay well anyways, It’s amazing here. If you’re rich, come back….
I have so much growing up to do. I’m so inexperienced. It sorta sucks. And I also have to learn how to not be dependent on others. Now is the time I become a big girl and do things on my own. Test the waters. Be brave. It’s scary. But hopefully by 21 you have that mastered. At least a little bit. I hope you’ve learned to relax by now. But don’t ever lose your laugh. It gets picked on a lot, but it’s great. It’s part of what makes you, you. As insecure as I get, I know that much. Don’t drink too much. Get tipsy. Bad experiences with being drunk. Don’t lose your virginity with someone you don’t love. Try not to lose it at all. (Until marriage) But if you do, make sure you know you want to spend the rest of the life with him & the feeling’s mutual. It has to be special.
Find out what you want to do and do it. Life’s gonna be harder from this point and 21 will be even harder. Growing up isn’t supposed to be easy I guess. Be a good person, Christina. Deep down you have a good heart. I think. I hope. It’s just so hidden ‘cuz you’re so dang selfish. But just be who you wanna be and who God wants you to be. Don’t try to make other people love you before you love yourself. It’s really hard to do.
“Hot stuff” is playing on a radio or something. Weird. Anyways, I don’t have much to say except,
Enjoy Life, Don’t worry, I hope you’ve grown up, Be a good girl, and Love yourself. Oh, and kiss lots of boys.
PS: I’M IN PARIS!
Love, Me. (Write me back!)
Response to my 18 year old self (March 2011):
As always, I’m a little tardy in writing this. But just by a day, so hopefully you understand. Psh. Of course you do! You’re me!
So where should I start? Hm. Well, I know you hate this, but I’m gonna preach at you a little bit. Just a little. You worry too much. Slow down. Breathe. You’d be surprised how things really do work themselves out in time. Life is going to hit you fast and you have plenty of time to grow up. You’ll make a few doozies of mistakes in the next year or so. You do still fall for the wrong guys, but as of right now you are sitting next to your husband trying to get him to stop cuddling with you so you can type this up. Your husband! Who knew, right!? He’s a little annoying sometimes, but he’s a good boy who loves you a lot and would do pretty much anything for you. He puts up with and even adores your insanity, and that in itself makes him a good man. And, I just want to imagine you blushing hardcore when I say this,…..The sex is awesome. Hee.
Where was I? You do kiss some boys. You learn how to get your flirt on. You keep your dorky, high-pitched squeal of a laugh. You still have a bladder problem. You’re still not sure exactly what you want to do with your life, but you’ve also learned that most of the fun is taking the time to figure out what you don’t yet know. You’ve replaced some of your childlike hope with a large dose of realism, and you know, I’m not really sure whether that’s a good thing or not. You’ve learned to calm down, to do things on your own and how to socialize and pretend you weren’t an awkward homeschooler for most of your life. You definitely do test the waters, more than you ever imagined and then some. I won’t comment on the drinking part; Let’s just say you’ve settled down on the partying (for the most part) at this point. You did wait for the right guy to come along, and it was worth it, though the waiting until marriage thing didn’t stay as important to you as it once was.
You’d be surprised. A lot of things became less important, or more important. A lot of things change in just a few years. A lot of things just aren’t important enough to lose sleep over. But you’ll realize that soon enough. You’ll realize a lot of shit soon enough. Oh, by the way. You sort of use curse words now. Sorry. Anyway, I don’t think you need to know much else. I guess you’d be happy to find out you have many amazing friends, a cozy little home, a university that you love, a much stronger sense of independence & confidence that was waiting to come out all along, and a bunch of adventures and experiences under your belt. Nothing to worry about after all, see? Just a whole bunch of stuff to look forward to. But for now, you’re lucky to be really young and dumb and in PARIS. Jealous. (Hopefully the next time you go back will be with your hubby. Eek!)