25 Years – A Letter to My Teenage Self
The world is a funny place. It is both everything & nothing like you always hoped it would be. And no, just as you always suspected – being a grown up isn’t all a bed of roses. I wish I could tell you to embrace your teen years, but I know you (because, well, you’re me) and there’s never been a time that you weren’t in a rush to grow up.
I remember those days, being in middle school huddled around the lunch table with your friends, giggling about your crushes and daydreaming of the future. We all talked of where you would go to university, your career, what your wedding day would look like, how many kids you’d want to have & by when – for many of us 25 seemed like the right age to attach to many of these aspirations. But you know what they say about best laid plans.. I’ve learnt one of the greatest gifts in life is time – savour these years while you can. Don’t wish them away.
Don’t take yourself too seriously, because life is serious enough on it’s own already. It’s okay not to be perfect and to mess up – in fact, it’s encouraged. And don’t worry, you’ll mess up A LOT. Every time you fall down, be thankful. It’s another opportunity to grow, to learn from your mistakes and to come out better on the other end. And just remember, no matter how many times you mess up or things go wrong, life always seems to have a way of righting itself in the end. Things will work out.
Stop worrying so much about what people think. You’ll save yourself a LOT of heartache. People will think what they will NO MATTER WHAT you do so save yourself the hurt and stop trying to be perfect for everyone. If they don’t like you, it won’t matter what you do to try and make them “get you”. Realize that those who constantly fight to understand you & make you feel like you’re different from them instead of just accepting you for who you are may not be a real friend. You’ll learn that those who are your true friends will be there for you during both your UPS & DOWNS, not just for the easy or comfortable moments. They’re the ones who will ask you how you’re doing with the downs & truly mean it.
Your quirks are beautiful, even the ones you may think are ugly. They are all part of the pieces that make you uniquely you. Don’t let anyone tell you that your imperfections make you not as good or worthy as them, but embrace them and make those things work FOR you.
I could write for ages about lessons learned & hardships had but the only thing that really matters is this.. Learn to like yourself. No. Learn to LOVE yourself. It’s easy as you age to let the things people say – their interpretations and opinions of you & who they think you are – shape & change you. Instead, change your inner voice. Stop being so hard on yourself. Keep your head up and take pride in who you are. Listen to that little voice inside, but most importantly don’t be afraid to take that leap of faith. Trust your heart, it knows you best.
A 15 Year Old Meg in Lima, Peru in 2007
Happy Birthday to Me! This has been a MILESTONE year of transitions, growth and experiences. I remember spending the last few years looking at the calendar to this day. The day I turn 25. When I looked at it, all I felt was despair and hopelessness. Time was passing me by & I was held captive watching it go. I felt lost and trapped all at the same time. Like my life and the path I took was out of my control. I was spiralling and dreadfully unhappy. Looking back on this last year and a half, I never could have imagined that I would be where I am at today – so happy & content in where I’m at in life. You see, I was numb. Lost in a dark hole I thought I could never escape. But eventually fate stepped in and courage & confidence came forth to trust my heart and believe in myself.
The last couple years of growth have been the best, most difficult & transformational of my life. It’s hard to admit given what I’ve gone through but I have never felt happier, more confident and more fulfilled than I do now. I’ve relished life and found joy in the journey.
Sometimes life feels overwhelming, like a giant wave crashing on you, pulling you under and threatening to suffocate you. You feel like you might never break free. I’m here to tell you you can and you will. You are capable, you are more than you think you are, and you are so beautiful in each and every way. Life is good guys, and it’s just going to keep getting better! Don’t give up because you truly never know where life is going to take you next…
I strive to advocate for Mental Health Awareness. If you struggle with Depression or Mental Health, you are not alone. Reaching out for help that first time can be hard but is the best thing you can do for yourself. Find someone safe to talk to.
If you’re in BC, you can contact the Mental Health Helpline at 310-6789 or check out more info & learn more about Depression from HealthLink BC by clicking here.
CTV has a great article here on Mental Health & Suicide Prevention Resources & Helplines here: http://www.ctvnews.ca/mental-health-in-canada-where-to-get-help-1.704877
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