To my 16-year-old self,

First of all, I want to start by saying that you'll be proud in the future about the level of self-love you'll achieve over the next few years. You are turning out to be the person you always wanted to be, but you were too scared to become. You're turning into that independent young lady that you always admired. You're becoming someone who doesn't care what others say or think about you. You're seeing the world in a completely new light, and your new-found passions are helping you make it through each day.

I know that you're going through so many battles right now. You're dealing with the stress of your senior prom and tutoring lessons for the SATs. Mom and dad are being hard on you, but it all comes from a good place. They just want you to get that scholarship you've all been praying that you get.

You're at that age where you feel like you're grown, so you're causing fights with everyone around you, you're not listening to anyone, and you're just trying to do whatever it is that you want to do. Everyone thinks you're a bad person because of this, but deep down, you know that you're truly a kind-hearted, good person; you just don't know how to show the real you.

You're anxious and worried about every decision you're making. You want to pass the SATs so you can attend college in America like you dreamed, but you're worried about the relationships you'll be leaving behind.

There are so many things going through your head right now, but I want you to know that you handled it all very well and everything turned out for the best.

I know there's a lot going on for you right now, and I'm so sorry about that. You surround yourself with people that take you for granted, and they just seem to use you. You're not being appreciated enough, and no matter how much you give, it's never enough for them. You're being pushed around just because of how nice you are, and your self-esteem is so low that you don't even have the courage to stand up for yourself. I'm sorry you felt like you had to do horrible things to people just to fit in with the "popular" girls.

You'll soon realize that the only validation you need is from yourself.

You have gone through so much in such a short amount of time, but I want you applaud you. Even after going through these things, you did not allow it to change who you truly are. You are becoming a young woman that cares about everyone else and their feelings. You're becoming that voice for others that you couldn't be for yourself. You're fighting against all that toxicity. You're turning out to be a great person, and even though you'll always go through hardships, you'll never give up.

Everything that you're facing right now is part of a bigger plan. Even though you feel like everything is against you right now, everything comes together for your best interest. You are the best person you'll know, and the growing love you're going to have for yourself is going to be greater than anything else.

I can't wait for you to meet yourself in 3 years because you're going to be so proud.

Love,

Your biggest fan.