Dear My 15 Year Old Self

You’re about to be introduced to the hell we call life.  You will witness, experience and be forced to deal with things you never thought possible.  You will cry; a lot.  Your heart will be broken, dreams shattered, nightmares will become reality and you will feel like the world can’t possibly get worse.  It will.  You will feel lonely, like you have absolutely no one to turn to; sometimes you won’t.  But you’ll become friends with a girl who will stand by you through it all.  She’s great like that.

For the next 15 years you will continue this roller-coaster ride.

You will lose a loved one, but it will feel like you lost several.  You will see your parents through multiple serious illnesses, some of which you will be terrified of and you will face it alone for the most part.  You will feel financial hardship that would mortify you right now, but it’ll be short lived.  You will face a serious illness of your own.  It will shake you to your core.  You will make decisions regarding it that not everyone will agree with, but you do this for you – not them.

The plans you have so neatly made; they won’t all come to be.  The 5/10/15 year plans, they’re all thrown out the window.  You’ll focus on merely keeping your sanity in tact and getting through each obstacle the best you can.

But life gets better.  God, it gets SO much better.  You’ll meet a man in just a few short years.  You won’t know it, but he’s going to become your best friend and soon to be husband.  He is truly the answer to your prayers.

But first you’ll have high school.  High school, although it may seem like it in the beginning, doesn’t last forever.  You’ll move on, travel a bit, enjoy your friends and family and go back to school.  You’ll study business and find a true, honest passion for it.  You’ll specialize in human resources, but find a love for marketing.  Which you will eventually find yourself studying the second time you go to post secondary (yes, you still love learning!).  You will eventually set goals for yourself again, as well as a bucket list.  Not only will you achieve your goals, you will blow some of them out of the water.  You will get to experience one-by-one the items on your bucket list – mostly thanks to your incredible fiancé.

That’s right.  That boy I mentioned, he’s going to become your husband.  You move in together in about 7 years from now.  It’ll be a huge adjustment, but a fantastic decision.  You’ll teach each other SO much; he’s the ying to your yang.  He’ll keep you from getting too serious, like you always do.  He’ll show you that he loves you through his words, but more than that, he’ll show you through his actions.  He’s not afraid to cook, clean or even give those back rubs you’ll come to LOVE.  He’ll do this a lot as you study and fret over your family.  More than that he’ll come to support them as well.  He’ll play board games, go on endless walks and go to events he finds the most boring – because it makes you smile.  He’ll hold you as you cry so hard your body shakes.  He holds your hair as you vomit when it all becomes too much (yes it gets to that point – more than once).  He’ll force you to put yourself first when you treat yourself as an afterthought.

You’ll support him the same way because a love like this; it’s written about in books.  Not the Disney fairy tales, but maybe a grown up version.  The one where the ‘prince’ doesn’t have millions, but instead has a heart worth billions.  The one who makes the worst possible day better simply by existing and being there with you.

You’ll develop habits; some good, some bad.  You’ll never lose your love for cold pizza and milk.  You’ll continue to eat potato chips like they’re in their own food group, but you’ll also learn SO much about nutrition and fitness.  You have a passion for it.  You’ll grow to crave your headphones and high impact cardio as your stress relief.  It helps with the chocolate snacking – yes, you actually like chocolate now!  As much as you grow up in your eating habits, the stress snacking never leaves you.  Neither does your love for music.  You still LOVE loud music.  Headphones, hair brushes, singing and dancing – you still love it all.  You still lose yourself in the lyrics; lying down with your eyes closed just absorbing the music for a short while – it still feels like heaven.

You’ll grow to accept that your huge dysfunctional family is never going to change.  You stop praying for it; you stop crying over it and best of all you stop letting it hurt you.  You stop caring about the opinions of family members and start to enjoy and love the life you have.  You finally accept yourself and stop striving for perfection.  Yes, that feeling of never being good enough DOES go away.  You realize that their criticism comes from a place of discontentment with their own lives and really has nothing to do with you.

You’ll pursue your dream, but it won’t be for awhile.  You’ll discover new loves in business, but you’ll use them to do something you’ve dreamed of since childhood.  You’re still working on being your own boss full time – we’re almost there!  You’ll work in an industry that eats your soul for breakfast and comes back for seconds lunch time.  You despise it and it makes you pretty unhappy.  But chin up, besides this, you LOVE your life.

You get a kitten.  I know, how’s this possible when you’re a dog lover, but you’ll love her.  She’s just like you.  Loves routine and is in distress without it.  Honest, she cries and walks where you ‘should’ be going – ie bedtime.  She loves shoes and refuses to sleep in a bed unless it consists of your clothes.  You still have the same stance on children, that hasn’t changed any although your Mom is still holding out hope that you’ll change your mind.

This all may come as terrifying news, but don’t let it scare you too much.  You come through it all great and trust me when I say we have a pretty sweet life right now.  We’re not millionaires, but we have an apartment we love, a man that I swear our angel had a hand in delivering and a lifestyle that makes you feel content 9 out of 10 days.  We don’t quite have our shit together 100% for what we had planned, but we’re 90% there.  Although we may not have ended up quite where we intended, I think we’re exactly where we’re supposed to be.

You did well kid; you did well.

Love, 30 Year Old You

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Hi! I'm a professional portrait photographer and lifestyle blogger from a small little city on the east coast of Canada.

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