To My 12-Year-Old Self, Don't Forget To LOVE Yourself

To My 12-Year-Old Self, Don't Forget To LOVE Yourself

You'll be fine, I promise. Everything gets better with time.

Dear Me,

I'd ask how you're doing, but I pretty much already know. Middle school sucks, I know. The braces and the frizzy hair probably don't help all that much, but ride it out, it'll all get better with time. The acne will be gone in a few years too (for the most part), so don't worry too much about it all.

It seems like life pretty much sucks right now for you, and to be honest, it really does. Middle school isn't the end-all-be-all, trust me on that. The friends you have right now probably won't even be around in the next two years, let alone in the next six, but make sure you stick to the ones that will always have your back. When times get tough, they'll be the ones you'll want to lean on.

Go easy on Mom and Dad. Mom loves you, and only wants whats best for you and your brother. When everything else goes south, she will always have your back. You and her are going to butt heads over a lot of things in the next few years, but at the end of the day, she is almost always right.

The same rules apply for Dad. You and he won't argue as much as you and Mom probably will, but it doesn't mean he doesn't love you. He works ridiculously hard to give you the opportunities that you have, so appreciate them every day. Don't lie to Mom or Dad, because they'll know, and you'll get your butt kicked for it. They'll give you a lot of responsibilities over the next few years, but also a lot of freedom that you could never dream of. Don't abuse the trust they have in you, because you'll have a hell of a time earning it all back.

Appreciate everything that they do for you. One day, you'll realize just how special they are. Same goes with Yiayia and Papou. You haven't met Theo Pete yet, but he'll be coming around soon. Give Theo Pete and Papou a hug for me. You never appreciate exactly what you have until its gone.

Right now, it's only you and Alex in terms of siblings. He looks up to you, so be a role model for him. He's young now, so you and he don't really hang out too much, but that'll change with time. He'll mature, and so will you. He'll become your best friend, along with a new sibling that'll come along while you're in high school.

Don't worry, there won't be any babies coming along from Mom and Dad, but you'll get a new sibling nonetheless. Keep an eye out for her. From the first day you meet her, you'll know she's someone special. You, her, and Alex will get along just fine, I promise. You'll get in a bit of trouble with them every once in a while, but you'll always have each others' backs.

These next few years are gonna be tough, but you'll find where you belong.

Don't be afraid to try new things, and if something doesn't work out, it's not the end of the world.

Go out for the school musical, join the riding team, do something you never thought you could.

I promise that everything will work out exactly the way it should. You should go check out the firehouse down the road from you. You never know, you might just like it.

You'll be fine, I promise. Everything gets better with time. You'll learn and grow in more ways than you could ever imagine. Be patient. You'll love who you turn out to be.

Love Always,


(P.S. Dad will cave on the whole "no pets" thing, I promise. It might be when you least expect it, but I promise, he'll get there. Show them that you're responsible, and everything will work out just fine. Her name will be Pita, and she loves to cuddle.

Cover Image Credit: Summer Mae Photography

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I'm Not 'Spoiled,' I Just Won't Apologize For Having Great Parents

Having supportive parents is one of the best things that ever happened to me.


When I tell people that I am the baby of my family, there is always a follow-up question asking if I am spoiled. As I was a child, perhaps the situation was a little different because I did not receive material things but instead got my way or rarely was punished. I was most likely spoiled rotten in that sense, especially by my grandparents. Fast forward to the age of 19 and I can say that my parents give me everything that I need, not necessarily everything that I want.

But I still don't think I'm spoiled.

I might legally be an adult, but my parents still provide for me. I may live at school during the semester, but my parents don't charge me rent or utilities when I am at home. My mom still does my laundry. They pay my phone bill monthly. When my mom goes grocery shopping, she doesn't have me chip in to help. She will make sure the bathroom is stocked with tampons or shampoo so I don't have to worry about it. The both of them make sure I have the sufficient needs to not be hungry, cold, or without shelter.

They do all of these things because they want what is best for me.

While they pay my student loans, I give them money to cover it as well as a little extra each month for different expenses. If we go out to eat, I do offer to pay but often get shut down and end up leaving the tip instead. I help around the house and sometimes make trips to the store for food or cleaning supplies, not asking for money to be paid back.

I have a job that gives me decent hours, but my parents understand that money for a college kid is tough.

I pay for my own luxuries such as makeup, cute clothes, even to get my hair cut. Spoiled is typically defined as "damaged by having been given everything they want." Do I want another dog? Yes. Do I have one? No. Do I want a swimming pool in my backyard? Yes. Do I have one? Again, no. That is because both my mother and father still believe in working for what you want and even their daughter doesn't get a free pass unless it's her birthday or Christmas. Do I still have everything I could ever need? Yes.

My parents do the exact same thing for my brother and sister who are older than I am.

I know if I have a problem, whether it be financial or crucial, I can turn to them for help. A lot of people my age don't have parents like I do and I am extremely grateful for them and everything that they do. Thanks, Mom and Dad.

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Summer And Jobs

Working summers doesn't have to be tedious.


Like many other college students, I was ready for summer but was kinda bummed that I had to work. Its not that I didn't like where I was working, I actually was really lucky to be working in a hospital environment but I just hated being alone all summer from 9-5. I've had this job for a few years now and a few other paid interns came and went but I never really connected with any of them. This year is different though.

I got really lucky to have another intern work with me that was very similar to me. The tasks we got were always simple but they were made to be more fun because I got to do them while talking with someone else. Now I actually enjoy and look forward to going to work.

The key to finding a good job is finding one that you enjoy doing and one that will help you gain knowledge that will help you out with future career plans. Working with friends also make tasks enjoyable! I would be careful with working with your friend however because if your job needs you to be serious and focused, being around your best friends may distract you from that.

Another thing that definitely makes summer jobs more enjoyable are taking breaks! It is your summer vacation after all! I'm not saying don't take a day off just to sit around, but if you make plans with family and friends, take a Friday off and enjoy the warm weather and good company! Employers understand that us college students and on break and have lives, they are usually very lenient with days off!

If you have to do a summer job to make money to live off of or pay for college, the best thing to do is look at the big picture. If you don't enjoy your job but can't afford to quit, remember that the money if going to help you out a lot. Also, this job is probably only for the summer right? So it's not permanent my friend! Get through these annoying few weeks and you will be back at college, taking steps for a bigger and brighter future.

Summer jobs are tough, I know, but make the most of it! And don't forget to enjoy it whenever you can!!!


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