There's a lot I wish you knew, and there's a lot I wish I would've done differently. In nearly four years, I've grown from where you're at, to the person I am today. It's been a long, learning process, but here are some things that I wish I knew sooner.
First off, you don't have to stay friends with someone just because you were friends with them in elementary school. We are not all supposed to work out and stay best friends forever with people we were once close with. High school changes people, and if you're surrounded by people doing things you don't want to be a part of, then don't be a part of it. You do not have to stay around just because you do not want to hurt someone's feelings. High school is for growing, and holding onto those old friendships can seriously prevent that.
Second, you do not have to be in a relationship to feel whole. Love comes from within yourself, not through others. Putting yourself into a relationship in hopes of "fixing" your own lack of self-love is not the way to go. A healthy relationship will never come out of hope for self-love or hope for your second half. Trust me, a solid relationship will never occur if you don't first love yourself.
This is an important one, do not put yourself through a relationship just because it seems too hard to get out of. You're too nice of a person, I realize this. You put yourself through things in order to not hurt others when you hurt yourself in the process. Learn to let go. Learn to be selfish for once. You and your feelings come first. You do not have to suffer through something just to protect someone else's feelings.
Please, go to church. I know you've been going your whole life, but that's not what I mean. Go be present in church. Find those that help you grow in your relationship with Christ rather than pull you away. I should've done that sooner. Surround yourself with those who have the same morals and goals as you. Go to church with others, talk about Christ with others. It the most beneficial thing there is.
Do not ever be afraid to talk to someone about the things going on inside your head. I know you think at 90 mph all day, every day, but find a way to slow down. Find a way to not bottle up everything inside. Getting those thoughts and emotions out is important. Even though you may want to think that it's easier to keep everything in, it's not. I promise.
Do not take any time with anyone for granted. You truly do not know how things are going to go. You may think you have it all figured out, and you have everything planned just right, but trust me, you don't. There's never enough time. There's never a guarantee of anything, even if it seems so set in stone. It took me a while to realize that, but once you do, you become more grateful for the experiences, things, and people you have within your life.
Finally, some general reminders that you should focus on more. Put your phone down. Be present. Pursue your passions from the minute they start. Do not hold back. Do not let others hold you back. Love unconditionally. Pray without ceasing.
I love you. Your friends and family love you. I know you're doing the best you can. As much as I wish could change this part of me or go back and give you some of this advice, I don't know if I would. You helped make me who I am, just as you are. Thank you. I love you.
- Your older self