To the version of me who thought she lost herself:
Right now, you're a sophomore, and going through what you will say for years is the hardest year of your life that you have ever experienced.
You're going to lose some friends, and you aren't prepared for it. They will talk about you behind your back, deny it when confronted, and only open up when you start to lose your patience.
And no matter what you think in that moment, it'll be one of the best things to ever happen to you. You'll discover who your true friends are- the ones who really like you for you. The people who truly care about you will not have to be convinced to make it known, and it'll be during other times than when it is convenient based on their wants.
Some of your current friends will stay friends with those who did you wrong, and that'll piss you off, especially because they don't want you being friends with people who did them wrong. Take some time to think about the situation, rather than getting upset immediately. High school drama is not worth getting caught up in, so don't allow yourself to get roped into more than you can handle.
I'd say don't get wrapped into any drama at all, but you're fifteen years old and one of the most stubborn people I know. It's going to happen at some point.
During your junior year, you'll make unexpected friends, and you'll begin to become more outspoken. You've always known your worth, but you'll finally accept it, and have no issue expressing it to people who seem to have it confused. A year later, you'll meet people who are the personification of happiness. These same people will make you feel so loved, and the experiences you have with them and the memories that you make will be some of the greatest ones you'll find yourself looking back on.
At the same time, however, it is important to remember that relying upon people for your happiness isn't the path to being content. Luckily for you, you'll find happiness in many things. You'll find that you have a passion for making music videos, and an even bigger passion for video editing. You'll rekindle your loves for art and video games, and your best friend will encourage you to pursue both as a career.
Speaking of, during your senior year you'll realize just how much you don't want to major in film. And that's okay! You'll go through several months in a career-descision limbo, but as I said, your best friend will say that she can see you working as a character artist for video games. It'll be a lightbulb-moment for you; you've never considered taking on something like that as a career, but you'll know in that moment that you want to go for it.
No matter how much you don't think it'll happen, you'll finish the film program you joined your junior year. The people you meet in that program will remain some of your closest friends throughout your last half of high school, to your beginning of college. The information you learn and skills you develop over the two years in the program will benefit you both in and out of class, and to your surprise, even when you begin studying game design.
During your senior year, you'll create a music video series that'll lead you to incredible people and even more incredible memories. It'll only become a series because the first video did really well, and you want an excuse to hang out with the people in the original video again.
You're clever, but not a closed book- they'll see through that excuse to film. Lucky for you, they love the series and they enjoy your company, so it's a win-win situation.
Your plans for the series won't be fulfilled before you move for college (let's be honest- the plan to create a film in a couple months was great, but a bit out of your league). However, this time away will give you more than enough time to curate the plans for the series to perfection, so that when you visit Myrtle Beach for Christmas you can continue production.
During this same time, you'll lose some friends again. The difference is that this time, it's expected; your sociology teacher will refer to it as "dirtying the nest" so it's easier to leave for college. Don't worry too much over it, these people will be back in your life once you all have settled into your universities.
There's a boy that'll be in your biology class the second semester of your sophomore year. You're going to wind up hating because you both keep accidentally dying your hair the same colors. Stop being so stubborn with him! You're more alike than you think, and a year from now, he'll become one of your best friends.
When deciding colleges, you'll be very torn. You'll only apply to three, and when it comes time to make a decision, you'll have never experienced stress this intense. One of your favorite teachers, your English teacher from junior year, will provide you guidance during this time. She'll write you recommendation letters that focus on your character, as well as your skills. You'll never know what they say, but she was eager to write it, if that eases your nerves any. No matter what your choice, she'll prove to be one of your biggest fans. Upon choosing Drexel, she'll be elated, and tell you that whenever she's in the area she'd love to visit.
Her words of guidance will be exactly what you need in the transition out of high school into the university.
The little things along the road will be nice too.
You'll visit Disney again, once with your best friends and once for nearly a month with your family.
You'll continue your tradition of seeing All Time Low with your mom every two years. You'll meet two of the members from Waterparks, as well as Derek from State Champs. How cool is that?
You'll play some really great video games, and you'll make some really gorgeous art.
You'll visit some beautiful places, read incredible books, and eat delicious food.
Overall, you'll be okay.
You have a lot going on that's making you question everything possible; your priorities, your wants, your friends, your future, your career plans, and basically anything that you can put doubt in. In the mindset you'll find yourself in, it's easier for you to have a pessimistic viewpoint and expect the worst from people rather than accept the good things you have going for you. You'll joke around, saying it's so that your expectations are always met or so you're pleasantly surprised. While I can't tell you to stop that, as it's already played out, I'll offer the suggestion to not think that way in the future. You're far better off looking at the glass half full rather than half empty.
To the version of me who thought she lost herself:
You don't know who you are just yet, and you're still figuring it out.
And while I can't change what has happened, nor can I predict what will, all I can suggest is to learn from your experiences.
Looking back three years later, I want you to know that everything turned out great.
Let yourself accept it as such.