Five years ago from right now, I was sick as a dog with thyroid disease. I was constantly nauseous, had no appetite and my hair wouldn't stop falling out. I was also incredibly anxious and paranoid due to a fear of losing someone who didn't care about me.
This was my summer before senior year of high school. It was easily the worst summer of my life, and one of the toughest times in my life. My physical illness was fixed with a doctor's visit, but the ailments to my mental health took a bit longer.
I've written about my experience with emotional abusebecause I feel that I can help others by telling my story from the amazing platform I have on social media. It's the best part of writing lifestyle and dating articles; you can help others hundreds of miles away simply from your words. After scrolling through my Facebook posts from five years ago out of pure boredom, I felt it was necessary to write a letter to myself from that time.
Dear 17-year-old me,
I know exactly what you're thinking right now. That one doctor's visit is going to fix all of your problems. It would be amazing if it worked that way, but all that one visit is going to do is make that goiter in your throat disappear and eliminate the nausea. That constant feeling of tension in your throat and lack of appetite didn't come from a hormone imbalance, and I think you've known that all along. What is causing you pain is the same thing that once made you the happiest girl on Earth.
After so many years of awkwardness and unclear skin, it's natural to not want to leave the first boy who told you that you were beautiful when your face started to clear up and you didn't look like a slice of pizza. You not only felt better about yourself, but you embarked on an incredible friendship. Unfortunately, people change.
You no longer have that friend who made your heart race and texted you until 2 in the morning about how fun that game of line soccer was in gym class. That friend now goes out of their way to make you feel like crap about yourself and isn't worth a second of your time. That friend isn't that amazing person anymore; that friend isn't even your friend anymore. Your true friends are the ones telling you the blunt and honest truth to stay the hell away from him. They're right, and they're the ones who truly care about you. They will stick with you for years to come (yep, they're still around). Friends are supposed to bring you up and make you feel better about yourself, not use every insecurity they know to destroy you and make you feel like crap about yourself.
I know you're scared that nobody else will ever make you feel as happy as he once did. You're going to meet some amazing (and not-so-amazing, the future isn't perfect) boys in college that will not only make you so happy but will treat you so much better. A wise man named Drake (yes, he's still cool) once said, "The first love is the sweetest, but the first cut is the deepest." It is true in your case. You're never going to be a giddy teenager again who never had their heart broken, but you're also (fingers crossed) never going to throw your phone against the wall and cry on the bathroom floor about something as stupid as a boy again.
You have the best friends and family in the world, and your future is brighter than you can possibly imagine. Cherish the ones who love and truly care about you, and forget those who don't care. At the end of the day, they don't matter.
No matter what a certain person makes you think, you are beautiful, and you are worth it. You are worth so much more than this, and even though it feels like pure hell, you will be not only okay, but happy again.
You're future self
P.S. No matter how hard life gets, never lose your pure sense of optimism. That is what makes you special, and someday you'll be glad you never let go of it.