Eighteen things I would suggest to myself when I was eighteen, now

Dear Corie,

You don’t know me, but one day you will. Anyway, a quick introduction would help: I am a young lady in my 30s, I got married six months ago, I have a good job in finance and I’ve just started doing short summaries of this “first part” of my life. I am happy, for sure, but now, when I look around me, everything looks like “easy“. You know what I mean? Well, I don’t think so. No more love pains, no more arguments with friends, I don’t find I have anything special to accomplish in my day-to-day life. My biggest challenges are what to cook for dinner, where to dine during the week-end, when to schedule next hairdresser appointment, what I would love to receive for my birthday. Yes, I still miss big steps in my life, like buying a house or having a baby. But I look more often to my past than to my future.

Anyway, I was like you, once. I was living my life with that energy now I put only arranging New Year’s eve party. I was living like that each and every single day. I was confused, I was happy, I was a dreamer, I was stubborn, I was.. I was plenty of great things, things that, in that moment, did not seem great to me, but they were.

Look around: you have everything. Maybe you don’t agree with me, but you will, one day. You are young, fresh, beautiful. Try different things, don’t get stuck, live your dreams. Don’t do something just because it looks like the easiest to do and you are afraid you will not succeed. Don’t be afraid to disappoint your parents and don’t do things just because you are too worried of that: it will arrive a point in your life you will be obliged to do it, so better sooner rather than later. So you will discover you cannot let them down: they will always be proud of you, whatever you are going to do. Risk. Fill that application for studying in the US, change major, do the interview for that job even if it is only for an internship.

Travel. Travel with the eye of the teenager you still are. Take dirty trains and sleep in the noisiest dormitory. Go off the beaten tracks. Go to London. Try to speak the foreign languages you know as much as possible. Pretend not to be Italian and avoid Italians abroad. Later will be too late: I started to travel when my salary had already five figures and it is too easy now deciding to go for the best choice everywhere. Then, you find you have missed something.

Don’t make love a priority in you life. Don’t be in a rush for finding your man, as spending your 20s as single is the best thing I can suggest you and moreover, trust me, relationship started at university will never last (we can bet, if you want). Enjoy your life like it is, have friends, be funny, don’t cry. Yes, please, don’t cry, because no ones of these guys will deserve it. And, trust me, they are going to be ugly in less than ten years. Preserve your friends and don’t trust strangers. Don’t trust someone just because he is lovely with you: words are easy to say, you don’t pay them too much. Don’t go out with your colleagues, because you have to keep a separate strict line between your private life and your work, and be at work a totally different person. Try to be serious, cold. Let your job talk for you.

You will fall in love, but this is not going to be “love”, be sure: the guys you will like will be the most rebel, those that are smoking weeds, listening to unconventional music, those with the dirtiest clothes and the nicest smile. These guys will always leave afterwards, they will have always to wake up early the morning after, and then they will not reply to your message for ages and you will find their pathetic excuses a good reason to make them stay in your bed once again, after months. They will not change. They will forget your birthday, they will cheat on you with your best friend, they will sleep with you only when you will be so drunk that you cannot remember how it ended up like that. They will make you suffer and at the end you will realize that you have never loved them, because they were not the kind of persons you want next to you for your life. And then, maybe, you will think about that cute guy. Do you remember the one I am talking about? He was too cute for words, a bit clumsy. He gave you a nice kiss after three dates and he spent the night you invited him at your place looking at you. You joked about that. He was plain, and serious, has already a great job and does not drink too much, because the morning after he had always some important meetings. He was always coming to pick you up. You will talk about him with your girlfriends laughing. Fifteen years later he will be a super nice dad. He will have the best work, and he will still look fucking hot – unless your boys that started to get wasted too young and they are now looking like fifty something big kids. Then, you will regret a bit the fact you are no more the most beautiful girl in the world, for him.

Don’t complain about your body and take care of it. I know they will come days you won’t sleep because you are too hungry and you just wait to wake up for checking your weight. I know they will come weeks you will not eat for days and night you will not go out because you feel too fat. Bullshit. You look great and in fifteen years you will pay for looking still that hot. Eat regularly, don’t drink too much alcohol, try to smoke not too much, don’t take diet pills that are just destroying your stomach. Avoid binge when you are sad, go out instead, walk through this city you love so much. Because I am sure that even if you proudly stated you will never leave, one day you will. And you will miss it. You will miss it like a boy you broke up with even if you still love him. And you will never talk about this city anymore, you will try not to come back, you will try to hide pictures and special moments you share. Maybe because it was too early to move and you still regret it a bit. So weight your choices with your mind and not with your heart, don’t do things based on your emotions, don’t hate yourself because you imagined a different life. You can get it, but you have to do it now. Because in fifteen years it will be too late. Trust me.

Take care,

A friendcants can

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One thought on “Eighteen things I would suggest to myself when I was eighteen, now

  1. Yesterday I was reading Too Soon Old, Too Late Smart, which reminds me of your post here. It would have been great to have my future self give you advice when I was 18. But life is a journey and the only way to learn sometimes, is the hard way.

    Like

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