21 People On What They Would Tell Their 19-Year-Old Selves
Jonathan, 55:There is no such thing as “the only one”. You will meet lots of “the ones”. Only commit when the timing is right for the both of you – that can take years for some, and that’s okay.
Miranda, 24:Drop pre-med.
Isaac, 48:Deodorant does not count as a shower, and that haircut only looked good on Bon Jovi.
Anya, 42:Make the conscious decision to be happy, and then stick with it. Society will do everything in its power to convince you that your personal happiness is dependent on something external – beauty, success, wealth, etc. – it isn’t.
Parker, 55:60% of the things you think are important now won’t matter a whit to you by the time you reach 50. The trick is to figure out the important 40% and work it.
Megan, 34:He doesn’t love you, and you will be okay.
Peter, 58:Don’t let anything stand in your way of taking part (or all) of your junior year abroad. You’ll never again have quite the same opportunity to experience a foreign land, for an extended period of time, in your youth. It is destined to be one of the most memorable aspects of your life.
Eleanor, 67:Talk less. Listen more.
Donald, 27:There’s a huge difference between who you want to be and who everyone around you wants you to be. Figure out which is which.
Camille, 56:Always remember: when falling off a horse, pull your tongue in.
Jackson, 57:No one knows anything for sure. They’re all just doing the best they can with what they have, just like you.
Vicki, 47:You’ll never have all the answers, so make every question count.
Donald, 38:You don’t have to grow up to be the dad you never had.
Katelyn, 30:Make the most out of college. You will never again be at a place where your only goal is to learn. Learn a lot, learn often, and learn with reckless abandon.
Joshua, 55:Women love to laugh.
Annabelle, 38:Drugs are not beautiful, glamorous or opulent. They are not a remedy, a solution, a cure-all, or a cure-anything.
Colin, 50:You miss so much life when you sleep until 3 PM. Wake up to see sunrises; they are the most stunning of nature’s masterpieces.
Eleanor, 26:Eating two pints of ice cream won’t make you happy. Neither will sprinting 10 miles. Be nice to yourself.
Aaron, 52:Don’t forget to ask that girl in the Oberlin library what kind of perfume she’s wearing. You’ll buy it for her in 20 years.
Scarlett, 54:Don’t be afraid to be yourself. Those that get you will love you, those that don’t, well, their loss. Just remember: Wherever you are, it’s a party.
Zack, 9:I hope you’re awesome. And be nice to girls.
“My job today is to remind you that novel writing is not essay writing, it is not memo writing, and it is not about staying on point. It is just fine—even good—if at this point you have no idea what the point of your book is.
The Page is All We Get. What shows up on the page? Well, that is your writing. The full-blown perfectly-whole concept you may have in your head? Is just thought. Obligatory prose does not serve the fiction writer. Being a good student is not the goal here.”—Aimee Bender, on the perils of dutiful writing. (via lettersandlight)
Three years later, a new girl sits cross-legged on your bed.
She tastes like a different flavor of bubblegum than you are used to.
She opens up a book that you had to read in high school, and a folded picture of us falls out of chapter three.
Now there are two unfinished stories resting in her lap.
Inevitably, she asks, and you tell her.
You say: I dated her a while back.
You don’t say: Sometimes, when I’m holding you, I imagine the smell of her vanilla perfume.
You say: She was younger than me.
You don’t say: The sixteen summers in her bones warmed the eighteen winters my skin had weathered.
You say: It’s nothing now.
You don’t say: But it was everything then.
Ugh, so I come home and I go to put my food in the freezer and there are FIVE tubs of ice cream in there. Only four girls live in this house and I do not like ice cream. Our fridge was literally being taken over by ice cream instead of real food. And I got mad because my skin is paper thin today and I’m just not handling things well and soooo I went off cussing out all of this ice cream. Then five minutes later I go upstairs to go to the bathroom and the housemate who is never home was sitting there and just quietly got up and shut her door. It was incredibly embarrassing because normal people do not cuss out their housemates’ ice cream.