Dear 16 year old Me…

This week a friend of mine put some photos of our last day at school up on Facebook. That was 19 years ago! And after cringing and laughing at the fucking state on us, I got to thinking of who I was then, and what I wish I known then that I know now.

I’m not one for regrets really; My motivation for lots of things seems to be ‘well, it seemed like a good idea at the time’ and I love my life now and wouldn’t change it,  but there have been decisions I’ve made in my life that with the benefit of hindsight, I wish had been different (For instance, there was a period of my life where I had a perm AND a silver puffa jacket that felt exactly how you’d imagine being wrapped in foil for an extended period would feel) and there are things I wish I could go back and tell me.

I may actually do a  couple of these posts, because whilst 16 year old me definitely could do with some tips, 18 year old me could do with some friendly advice and 22 year old me (when I had my first child) needs a bloody good talking to.

So here we go…

  1. You are NOT fat. You just aren’t. No matter what you think, no matter how much you compare yourself to your mates, no matter how much invisible fat you can see on your stomach: you aren’t. What you need to realise, Em, is that not everyone is destined to be a size 8. and that its ok not to be.
  2. Chill the fuck out. In a couple of weeks you’ll be starting your GCSE’s and you think these exams are the most important things in the world . You think if you dont get the best grades that your friends will laugh at you, your family will hate and the world will stop turning. And whilst they matter, none of those things is true. you are so young. and you hate being reminded of the fact you are young, because you want to be a grown up SO BAD, but what you dont realise is GCSE’s are just the start. You can (and will) resit them as an adult. That even if you dont do well, its ok. there are options. Also, you totally do well enough, so stop giving yourself an ulcer over it and just calm down, eh?
  3. To go back to that need to be a grown up. Dude, its not all that great, stop being in such a hurry.
  4. Be you more. I think you already have a decent sense of yourself, but you fight it because you think you need to do certain things to be ‘like everyone else’, and in the process you miss out on doing the stuff you love. You won’t ever like clothes shopping. You won’t ever ‘learn’ to enjoy saturday afternoon in Top Shop, so as much as you love your friends, stop forcing yourself into these torture sessions. Its ok to like your own company. Its ok to stay home and read a book. Do it more. In your future you will need to know a LOT about grammar and syntax and shit,so its useful!
  5. Appreciate your family more. I know at the moment the only people you want to spend time with are your friends and boys, but trust me, all too soon you wont have some of the most important people around and you’ll miss them.
  6. Take more pictures! even the 90’s had cameras. it would be cool to have more photos to remember some of the best times of your life by………though not the perm or the puffa jacket….



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