Acne. Middle School. Boys. Puberty. Friends. Drama. The absolute worst parts about growing up and transitioning into a teenager.

I remember being you, the sudden change from your carefree happy life to suddenly worrying about — well, everything. From the changes my body was going through and how they measured up to my peers, to the massive amount of school work and not wanting to be "too smart." I remember fighting with my "best friends" daily and doing incredibly stupid things to impress the "cool boys" and the "popular girls."

Some things I wish I could take back because they were ridiculously hard to get through and overcome, but ultimately they made me the person I am today. I hope that you make your own destiny, and I hope that you can do it without some of the heartbreak I faced.

So, for you, my beautiful, smart, hilarious teenage sister, I have some advice:

Don't try so hard to be everything you aren't

You have so much going for you. Your passion and dedication inspire people. Your kind heart draws people to you. There is no reason to want to be anything else. You're an amazing person who is meant to be a leader for others - don't let the "teen angst" take that from you.

Nothing is more important than school work for your bright future

PLEASE do not take for granted the fact that you exceed in your school work in order to hang out with a boy or any of your 'friends.' You have dreams that exceed any limitations anyone sees for you and there is not a doubt in my mind that you will blow these people out of the water with your accomplishments. Nothing will ever be more important than the math homework due the next day, so just do it. You have your whole life to hangout with your friends and worry about boys. Spend this time bettering yourself.

Love yourself before anyone else loves you

If you don't value your own self-worth, you will never believe that someone else does. You are special, and you are the most important person in your own life. You have already accomplished so much in your short life and you have so much to be proud of. Before believing a boy "loves you more than anything" and jumping into something that could end badly - take a minute and see just how much you love yourself. If you believe anyone loves you more than you love you - step back and take some time apart.

Lastly, never forget that you have a lifelong bestfriend right here

You are the one person I plan on telling all my secrets too; the good, bad, and ugly. I hope you feel the same way. I want you to know that you are the person I want by my side at my wedding and I cannot wait for my children to meet their wonderful aunt. You are never alone in life, good times and bad times. Let me help you when you struggle and celebrate when you succeed.

I love you, my beautiful sister. You are absolutely amazing in every way and I hope that you never forget that no matter what your biggest supporter is right here. Stay inspiring.


The most proud big sister on the planet