A little reminder to myself to keep trooping along and stay mindful of who I am. This letter might resonate with you, as I wholeheartedly encourage to self reflect to refine yourself and progress through life.
A Letter To Me
Photograph by Dave Knight
Your Facebook friends are all married and with kids, at the grand age of 22 don’t look at them as any guide to your own life, this is your journey and you call the shots. A loving partner and a cat is the light of your life right now so don’t jump into anything too early. Remember you always said you wanted to experience life for everything it has to offer before grounding yourself.
Never regret anything you do, because at one point that is what you wanted, and the same goes for fashion – you’re developing and evolving. Just because you no longer like to wear PVC pants with band tees tucked in doesn’t mean you have to delete all the photos, it just means that you’ve changed, and prefer a kimono over a suit. It’s cool to be comfortable too – so trade in your high heels once in a while.
Which reminds me, to never take yourself too seriously. Work your ass off to make yourself happy, and not because theres a monetary incentive to rent a fancier house and fill it with things that will only make you happy for a while. Your child-like (not childish) qualities make you likeable and break up the tension in the air, but always remember that life sometimes requires a serious you to make decisions, like doing taxes and all that boring grey stuff. At least when it’s done and after the millionth migraine you can cackle it all off, because after all laughter is the best medicine.
Be free, and stay up until 5am dancing on tables. You are the most influential person in your own life so strive to be the best person for yourself, and then others – in that order. Do something that scares you every day, if you never start you’d still be frightened of monsters underneath the bed like you were when you were 5. It’s basically the same just many years later, because the biggest successes come from the biggest hurdles to jump over. So do the same as you did when you were 5 and run underneath the bed and scream at that monster that was actually just a colourful sweater, as you’ll soon discover what you’re terrified of is not all its cracked up to be.
For that reason alone don’t do anything half arsed or cut corners, because to feel the success of something is the entirety of doing it. So strive for progression and not perfection. Always bare in mind you’ve defeated chronic insomnia, depression and been through years of bullying to come out a young lady who likes to smile, a lot. There’s a silver lining behind every dark cloud.
Spend every day admiring what you have, and what you’re grateful for. Tell yourself how much you love the person that you are, and how you wouldn’t change you for anything in the world. Similarly do it with other people. Tell everybody every compliment in your head. If your boyfriend looks fantastic then make a bloody point of raising the roof of how gorgeous he looks. You want the world to know what you think of them so vocalise all their good points instead of telling other people after they’ve left. Honesty is the best policy, and a gift to brighten the lives of others.
Always remember to look back at all your memories both the good and bad, and how it’s brought you to this moment. Life has a funny way of taking you on a journey, and things may not always go to plan but sometimes Plan B can be more rewarding than Plan A.
You’ve learnt now that your dream isn’t in London, to be a big fish in a big sea, that your roots will always be up north surrounded by culture, art and music. The friends you keep all around the country will always be waiting and a quick message away. As much as you want to be an adult that does grown up things, set yourself up in a way that doesn’t constrain you from being the wild spirit that you always are.
Money doesn’t define happiness, it’s the company you keep and the memories you make. Go exploring with your favourite person in the world, and don’t be embarrassed that one of your goals is to feed flamingos on a beach in Aruba. Don’t think the little things that you say or do are stupid, never shake your head in shame because someone pities you for having a dream. Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will.
As much as you’re told to not be a hoarder, keep the sentimental things. I know you’re gutted that you had to cut off all your festival wristbands, some of the best memories that you cling onto, as you look down at your wrist with a huge tan line, and think how naked your wrist has become after 4 years. But now they’re gone you can always appreciate those memories in a scrapbook. It’s a new day and a new chapter, and you can finally wear beautiful dresses without looking like a teenager with fabric hanging off your arm.
Also remember to ruffle through the box of memories of how you met the love of your life, and the journey you’ve taken as you come up to 4 years of the happiest times. It’s okay to still be head over heels in love with him and want to make him happy every second of every day, regardless of what your other friends are doing in their relationship. You lead your life like an open book so don’t hold back because others do. Young love is something very special and it shows he can deal with you from your teenage years to a woman who’s set herself up in life. Be glad he’s seen this miraculous change from a ugly ducking into a beautiful swan. Your confidence and self esteem in those last 4 years has sky rocketed and will only continue to flourish.
Keep smiling throughout everything you do, because a smile is the best way to cope with anything. Always remember how much you’re valued and what you’ve done for yourself and others.
Life is a rollercoaster of spirals, it’s meant to be full of screaming and laughter. There might be some bumps along the way but at the end of the ride, you’re glad you’ve done it.