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The one thing I would tell to my 16 year old self

High school is a pivotal moment for us in life, it is a time where we are experiencing growth mentally, physically, and emotionally all while trying to navigate through the world and figure out who we are. Now for most people, high school was the best experience of their lives; a time where they were free to grow and cultivate relationships that would potentially last for a lifetime. Meanwhile, for others, high school wasn't that memorable. It was simply a way out, a safe haven from the things that were happening in their lives that they couldn't talk about or wait to get away from.

For me, it was a mixture of both, now granted I did meet people and was exposed to new cultures and ways of living, I wouldn't say it was the best high school experience. High school was more of a safe haven for me, an escape from the realities of my world and what I had going on at home. I was always the "shy" girl, very reserved and closed off from the people around me. I never went to parties or school functions, and I rarely made relationships or hung out with people outside of school walls.

I was very guarded growing up, I guess you could say it was a defense mechanism to prevent myself from getting "hurt" by other people. When I was 16, I worried about a lot of things not many people my age worried about or should have to worry about. While this made me seem responsible and mature for my age to others, to me it was a downfall.

Because of my constant worrying, I never stopped and took the time to just be a kid, to live in the moment, and enjoy the things and experiences that came with being a high schooler. If I could go back and give one piece of advice to my 16-year-old self I would tell her: "Stop allowing yourself to be constantly worried about situations you cannot control, live your life with intentions, open up to people, and HAVE FUN! You deserve it!" Now that I am older and looking back, I am realizing that there's a lot I wish I would've done differently. If I had the chance to, I would talk to that person, go to that function, and speak my mind freely regardless of what anybody thought or had to say about me! If it's one thing I've learned is that life is too short to care what others think, live for you, and the rest will fall into place.

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