Instead of going out, drinking until I can't drink anymore, and doing it again two days later, I'm working my butt off to save money and becoming a valuable person in society. None of that would be possible if I was still itching to go out to parties and try new things that I haven't gotten to try yet.
From the young age of 14, I was experimenting, sneaking out, and getting smokes and booze any chance I got. This wasn't because of bad parenting, it was because of my creative and rebellious personality that I still have to this day. But now my curiosity is focused on traveling the world, saving money, coming up with business ideas, and figuring out how to be the best person I can be.
Thinking back, I'm pretty sure I was in seventh or eighth grade the first time I ever actually smoked pot. On football Friday nights, you could catch me in the student section with a water bottle filled with vodka. If someone was having a party, I was there. I went out to a bar when I was 16 years old with this old fake ID that I was afraid wouldn't work. Nowadays kids get in huge trouble for stuff like that, but to me, that's literally what growing up is all about.
You can hear someone give you advice over and over again, but until you experience it yourself your lesson will never be truly learned. Some may think that I'm missing out on memories I could make with my friends now, but I have all of those awesome memories from when I was younger. I can also make those memories and be the responsible one out of the group when I do decide that I have time to go out.
I wasn't a "bad kid." I got good grades, I played sports, I had good manners, and I was overall a pretty outstanding young woman. I never let my curiosity get the best of me and that is why I am where I am.
Flash forward seven years later and none of those things even cross my mind anymore. I see my fellow friends going out three to four times a week, running late to work and struggling in school because they are still curious about drinking and trying things that "normal teenagers" try.
Let's be honest, I was judged by some parents and even kids I went to school with because of the things I did. Although now, those same kids that judged me are still living under the shell that their parents created for them and it's holding them back from their economic, social, and mental potential.
Instead of looking hungover for work, I walk in looking like the most seasoned, clean cut, 19-year-old out there. Rather than spending my days planning my outfit for the party this Friday night and struggling to make ends meet, I'm looking into where I want to settle down and buy a home so I can start a business and build it from the ground up.
I beat the system when I was younger and thanks to that I'm killing slaying the boring expectations set by society for people in their early twenties.
So Dad, thanks for not getting an alarm on the house until I was 16. Believe it or not, it has given me a lot of opportunities. Mom, thanks for letting me do everything that Dad wouldn't. Lastly, shout out to all the "bad kids." I can't wait to see where this exciting life takes you.