A Life Lesson to Myself at 18
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A Life Lesson to Myself at 18

You have no idea just who you're going to be.

A Life Lesson to Myself at 18
Cheyenne Fallon Photography

At 18, I really thought that I'd had my life planned out. I thought I knew who I was, what I wanted, and where I would be. As I reflect, now 21, I can't believe just how much has happened in the last 3 years to completely obliterate the dreams I had at 18. When I was 18, I had three main pieces of my life. I was going to be a veterinarian. I had a boyfriend that I thought was mature and saw a bigger picture with me. I thought I had my mental health figured out. I had plenty of lessons to learn.

1. The people you think you trust, you shouldn't.

That guy that you think you're mature for dating because he's older? He's a douchebag. There's a reason he's not dating anyone his age or from his hometown. He doesn't care about you at all and is entirely using you. At 19, you're going to drive 4 and a half hours to his place to spend the night with him, he's going to get completely drunk, and you're going to learn at 2 A.M. that he's been cheating on you for seven months. He's going to try to convince you for the next two months that he's sorry and misses you. You don't need him. You're going to think that that's the worst pain you'll ever feel. It's not even close to what will happen at 21.

You're going to become stronger. You're going to stop letting people hurt you and use you. You're going to finally get a back bone and stand up for yourself.

Sidenote: You'll also write some really great songs about him for revenge.

Plot twist: He marries the girl he cheated on you with.

2. You'll start to venture, and that's okay.

You'll date. You'll talk to lots of different people. You'll meet a lot of new people. You need to learn that it's okay to say no and that you need to understand your limitations. You have to be selfish sometimes and do the things that make you happy. You're also going to go to a lot of concerts and meet a lot of the really awesome artists you idolize.

3. You can't put off your health- physical or mental.

In college, you really think you're invincible and you think that you can just push yourself and push yourself. You can't do that. It'll catch up to you. You'll run yourself into the ground. Take better care of yourself and actually remember to give yourself breaks. You may think you can keep yourself busy and that'll keep the depression at bay, but that doesn't work for long. The moment you get free time all those demons will be waiting to consume you.

4. Antidepressants are not your friend.

At 18, being on antidepressants for a year, you think that they are a gift from the gods. They are not doing you any good. In fact, they will endanger your life and almost kill you at 21. Everything that you thought you needed the antidepressants for, you'll eventually learn to control without. You don't need them to be in social situations, to take tests, to give presentations, attend interviews, or generally function. They will actually mask your real health conditions. Your depression and anxiety are not you. They are conditions you live with, but they can't consume you. You know what you are capable of, and you are capable of way more. You'll find out one day.

5. Your life long dream isn't meant to be.

Since the time you understood what a career was, you thought veterinary was exactly what you were meant to do. Let me tell you why, you're smart and you like animals. That doesn't mean you are meant to be a veterinarian. When it comes down to it, you have the brains and the ability, but it's not what makes you happy. You'll learn your knowledge is suited to multiple places, but it's not meant for you to be a vet. I wish I could have figured that out two weeks before I applied to vet school rather than two weeks after, as it would have saved me over $800.

The good news is that you find a real passion in doing research, and you're pretty damn good at it.

6. You're going to finally open up to people.

This may go back to venturing, but you're going to make some really meaningful connections. You're going to make several great guy friends that are going to have your back. They are going to be there for you just like your real brother. Their going to help you celebrate your successes and pick you up and brush you off when you need it. You're also going to make several great girl friends who are going to be more loyal to you, and show you what it really means to have great girl friends. You're going to open up to new friends and new love interests. It's going to make you grow and you're going to learn much more about yourself in a very short time than you did the whole first 18 years.

7. You're going to get your heart broken...and you're going to be okay.

It's going to hurt so badly, that you will know that you never loved anyone before him. You're not going to see it coming at all. You're going to be gasping on your bathroom floor, feeling like your chest is going to explode from the pain, and you know what? You're going to go to class at 9 AM 36 hours later. You won't let anyone see how much you are hurting. Only those closest to you will have any idea that you feel like you are dying inside. Even though it's going to hurt like hell, and it honestly still does, you're going to get through it. I still don't have any idea if the pain will ever subside, because I know the feelings haven't, but maybe one day it will make sense. Until then, you have an amazing mom and amazing friends who are there for you everyday.

8. You're so talented and you are just discovering it.

You're going to change lives. You're going to impact those around you in some way. You forget it all the time, but you can and do make a difference. You're going to teach a lot of kids through your university program, help people through volunteering, and do your best to be there for the people around you. Don't forget to appreciate yourself and all you do. You're really an amazing young woman, and you really can do anything you want.

Keep doing what you do. You're gonna make mistakes and you're going to learn. You're going to love and going to lose. Every experience is going to shape and mold you into who you are meant to be.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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