When I was 16 years old and in my final year of high school, I had to write a letter to my future self. It was placed in a time capsule for ten years, to be given back to me at my high school reunion last year. I didn’t go (for a few reasons) but it was mailed to me. When I read it, I couldn’t help but smile through tears – gosh teenagers really do know it all don’t they! I felt a wave of love, kindness and pride sweep over me as I imagined 16 year old me standing face-to-face with 26 year old me, saying this:
Ok, so if you asked 16 year old Emma where she would like to see herself in 10 years time, here’s her response. Either in a long term relationship or engaged. A woman of the world – who’s travelled to Europe or at least Queensland and Sydney again. Hopefully leavers went ok and you got into law or legal studies at Uni and made Mum and Dad proud and now you’re in a stable job and living away from home. Very important! And owning a really cool car. If you’re not doing any of this, then that’s ok. Because something you learned this year would have proved a very valuable lesson. Life isn’t about achieving a TER score or owning a car or having money to burn. If at the end of these 10 years, you feel like you’ve experienced life, love and happiness in amongst all the pain, anger and heartbreak that I’m sure came with it, then you’ve made the 16 year old in you happy. You never were very interested in achieving the norm – you wanted to experience life and experience everything, good or bad.
We both know (as in your 16 year old self and your future self) that the people you meet in life characterise who you are. Teachers, parents, friends, boyfriends… So I hope you’ve met amazing people the past 10 years, who have contributed to your life, happiness and soul – and if you haven’t, then make sure you catch up with those people who meant the entire universe to you when you were 16…
Be brave – after all, you did survive your teenage years. Love Em xox
I’ve decided to write back to 16 year old me and fill her in. I’ll make sure I share it with you too.