I don’t have an older sister, an aunt, or any older cousins who I could speak to on a regular basis when growing up. A part of me wishes that I could’ve more prepared or was given advice on the little things in life. However time has elapsed, I’m older, hopefully a little wiser and I thought I would share some of my life lessons with you.
Sometimes letting go is really the best thing
When you’re in school you may feel like leaving your friends is the most awful thing that could ever happen to you, you begin to hate the school system, the government and ultimately your class teacher (as if it’s their fault?!) I’ve been on both ends, as a student I felt like that when I was choosing my options at school – if you’re not familiar with the UK schooling system age 14-16 you get to pick 3 subjects which are from the creative/humanities category like Art or History. Any who I remember when I was 14 the worst thing was being separated from the only two friends I had. We all chose the same GCSE options but were separated into different classes. No actually, they were put together and I was on my own. As a teacher I now understand that the class teacher has nothing to do with this, it’s just how things fall in place. But if it wasn’t for me being alone in my lessons, I wouldn’t have learnt to let go and meet new people in school. Then when I went college, I knew nobody. My friends had gone off in different pathways – again quite a hard time for me but I learnt to let go and meet new people! And then you’ve got your relationship. You’re first serious relationship, if it’s not going right, there’s arguments and you spend most nights crying yourself to sleep then you need to let go. And saying goodbye to you’re first love is so hard. But the saying ‘if it’s meant to be, it will be’ there is some truth in that. Okay, so things don’t magically fix themselves, but you trying to work on something that doesn’t ultimately make you happy is only going to make you feel down and depressed. Let it go. *cue in Frozen song*
This sort of links with my last point – being alone can be the scariest thing when you’re young (or even as an adult) the last thing most people want is to end up alone. However sometimes staying with your thoughts can be helpful. Especially when you’re having a chaotic time, the best remedy is you, yourself and some fresh air. For me, a quick jog, a walk in the park just helps me to clear my mind up. Give yourself some TLC.
Save ze dolla’
Okay, so this was something my mother told me time and time again. But I didn’t listen, typical teenager. I was lucky enough to have a job I bloody loved at 18 and was really good at! I worked as a skincare consultant for a mahusive company, the ladies were amazing (and money was good) but I didn’t save a penny! I don’t even know why, I never had a crazy party life, never really went to bars or clubs. I travelled a little bit (not half as much as I would have liked) but most of my money went on clothes. Clothes that I haven’t even worn yet, 8 years later they’re in my cupboard with the price-tags still on and I just can’t seem to get myself to throw them away. Biggest regret ever! If you’re earning, save a little, save a lot. Just save.
Oh man do I regret not travelling, being in uni, meant that I had long summer holidays and I was earning which meant that I had the availability and money to book tickets for a quick break across europe and take advantage of cheap flight. Why didn’t I do this? Now I’m teaching (which I’m lucky enough to love) and ticket prices are triple what they would be during term time. Travel as much as you can. Doesn’t even have to be far – it can be down to the next city, just get out!
Love thy parents
So this is the biggie. You see, as you get older, you begin to appreciate the smaller things that your parents do for you. The food, the smiles, the hugs, the reassurance. All the tiny things that nobody in this planet would do for you, your parents fulfil and they become so much more valued. For personal reasons I held grudges against my parents for a long time – far too long. And one horrible, life threatening incident where I almost lost my mum made me realise that I would never be able to take back the hurtful things I said, the silence that I gave. When my mum laid in ICU on life support I prayed so hard, I prayed for my mum to open her eyes and tell me it’s okay. I wanted to say sorry. Sorry for being a selfish bitch. Sorry for acting like a spoilt brat. Weeks went by and my mum got better, we’re in a much better place and I appreciate the fact that I’m very lucky to be given a second chance, not everyone is lucky enough to get one. If you have read this and if there’s one thing you can take away from this, and tell someone who is dear to you that you love them. Especially you’re parents. *off I go for a cry…*