Dear 18 Year Old Self:

Martha Armstrong, Staff Writer

As I see you all alone crying in the dark, thinking that by sobbing into a pillow it would hide the desperate cries for help. People hear you, you cannot hide. I thought that you may need some advice right now.


Just think, sometimes you are facing difficulties not because you are doing anything wrong, honey. It could simply mean that life is life. Sometimes in life lessons are learned through hard times, but other times life is tough. I don’t have the best explanation for why this is, but life just isn’t fair. Sometimes the best thing to do is accept it for what it is, cry a minute, put your big girl panties on, and roll on in life.


Oh, and that man that broke your heart? You know the one I am talking about, the “one you loved so much?” As your 30-year-old self I will go ahead and tell you that he will be a memory that fades into oblivion. You may think it was “love,” but that word is a second-hand emotion these days. You will have learned how to protect your heart by him, and never be taken advantage of again. But, do not ever allow this man to put a scar on your heart that will prevent true love from coming in your life. You will know love when you find it. Never settle for less than what you deserve.


Let us talk about shoes and clothes. Who cares what is trendy? Create your own trends, or better yet, go to Goodwill and save some money. While we are on the topic, that little weight you gained? Who cares? Just like gravity, what goes up will come down. Don’t worry about that second piece of chocolate cake. You are so beautiful, and you will see that when looking back at your pictures. Have fun girl!


Let me get straight to the most important advice I could give you ten years later in life. You are in college. You are in the time of your life where your ideas, thoughts, ideology, and emotions are transforming. Soak it in! In order to be happy in life, stand for something. Every being on this earth has the liberty to publish their ideas. Make it count, make it matter. Leave a legacy, and start now.


Last thing: surround yourself with all kinds of people. However, as businessman Richard Tirendi says: “If you’re the smartest one in the room, you’re in the wrong room.” There is always room for growth and learning from those who are intellectual, truthful, and have more disciplined minds than yourself. Meet and network with as many wise people as you can. Trust me, as yourself ten years later you will be glad to have gained the bits and pieces of wisdom you have acquired.