Letter to Julie, aged 16

Hello Little Self,

You will completely disregard this letter, because you don’t believe in time travel, ghosts, reincarnation, etc. (and good for you), however, just humour me (yourself). Remember, you are so brilliant you really might have found a way to send a letter to yourself in the past!

First off, you WILL grow to like your curly hair. It will never be your favourite feature, but eventually you will learn to style it quickly and it will look great. However, stop dying the crap out of it, because at age 31 it will no longer be blond, it will turn brown and you have greys coming in prematurely! And DO NOT chop it all off it first year University when you get stressed out…man oh man did that take a long time to grow back and it made your fat face (yes you gained the freshman 40 instead of 15) look even fatter!

Now, seriously, what the hell are you doing? You are the top of your class for a reason…not just because you are a smarty pants, but because you LOVE being an overachiever. If you give up now and start hanging out at bush parties you are going to regret it! Don’t leave school early to work (the money is not worth it) and take some classes to keep up your awesome average (the money from the scholarships will be worth it). And for heaven’s sake take a Senior Art class, the work will be easy, it will boost your average even higher, and you won’t be forced to pay for one in University! If you do some research instead of just getting pissed off at that terrible guidance counsellor you will see this coming.

I know the positive attention you are starting to get from your friends makes you feel popular and seems to be more rewarding than an A in Calculus (take Calculus!), but it is just a temporary high (like all those chocolate bars you are scarfing!) Love yourself and keep working hard. Those idiot friends will desert you later on and you will left wondering why they were ever important to you in the first place. Put yourself first; put your future first. You were doing so well up until this point, just hang in there. I know that everything seems so overwhelming, and that is because it is! You aren’t supposed to handle all of this well when you are a teenager, you need to reach out…but stop reaching out to ditzy girlfriends and chocolate chip cookies.  Reach out to your parents. I know you think they are nuts (well, they are) but by the time you hit 30 you will realize they may have been strict, weird, inconsistent, unreliable, embarrassing, and lame…but they cared, had experience, and would have done anything to help if you had just asked.  Your parents are bonkers, yes I know, but you aren’t even giving them a chance to be parents. You are such a control freak that you are trying to be your own parent (and your brother and sister’s too – it isn’t helping your relationship with them either).

You have so much to offer and eventually you will find happiness. But you have to continue to work hard, not everything in life is as easy as an A in Chemistry! So stop resting on your laurels, stop wasting your talents, stop caring what Tiffany said about you and what party you missed on Friday.


Your wiser and happier (and greyer) older self.


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