Things I Wish I Knew Sooner

I wish I knew at 18 that love doesn’t get easier. You’ll love different people, and for very different reasons. Each relationship will have its own set of complications. At 18, you’ll break up because you’re going to different colleges. At 25, you’ll break up because you’re chasing different life goals. It hurts all the same. Love is a riddle that you’ll never fully figure out.

I wish I knew at 15 to treasure my parents. The mortality or your parents will become increasingly clear with each passing year. You’ll start to notice your father’s raspy voice and your mom’s graying hair. All those mean and spiteful comments you made as a teenager will resurface in your mind. You’ll regret being such a dick.

I wish I knew at 20 not to play it safe. To travel more. To love more openly. To risk it all. Young ones, there are no mistakes, just life lessons.

I wish I knew at 17 to embrace the weirdness. I spent so much time chasing homogeny — buying the same Aeropostale shirts and American Eagle jeans as my peers. Trying my very best to fit in. Now, it’s your uniqueness that gives you an advantage in business. In love, it’s your quirkiness that makes you lovable. Weird is a wonderful thing to be.

I wish I knew at 21 about sunscreen. Nothing is hot about looking older than you are. Also, that whole cancer thing.

I wish I knew at 23 to love my body. There will always be someone with bigger breasts, perkier cheeks, or lengthier legs. You will never be physically ideal. That’s okay. To the person that will one day matter most, you are perfect as is. They’re right.


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