Oh, to be young and foolish!

I’m turning 25 in eight days’ time and it got me thinking…should I already consider myself “old”? Well, I am certainly old enough to be considered an adult. Gone are the days of braces, baby bras, and high school uniforms. Damn it, we’re even celebrating our 10th year anniversary of high school graduation next year. Ten years! Imagine that. Where have all the years gone?

Do I miss being young? Sometimes. Do I want to go back and relive those days? Hell no. Sure, certain events have transpired and a lot of stupid decisions were made (which, honestly, I’d like to take back) but then, where will I be if I didn’t experience the highs and lows of being naïve?

Ergo, I have taken the liberty to list down some of the most important life lessons that I have learned in my youth:

1. Do not succumb to peer pressure.

Let me tell you a story that I am (and forever will be) ashamed of, but I’m gonna tell you anyway because we’re all “adults” here. So yeah, no judgment.

I had my first boyfriend when I was thirteen. Or was it twelve? Oh God, I think I was twelve then!

Anyway, I only said yes because at first I said no, and he totally sulked. So there, all of our classmates badgered me to give him a chance. Already annoyed, I said, fine! I’ll give the boy a chance (to court me). The fool misunderstood and interpreted it as yes, I’ll be your girlfriend.

I was even more stupid for not correcting his wrong assumption because I was afraid to draw the ire of our classmates.

I didn’t even know what love was. I didn’t know what being “in a relationship” meant. In fact, during the span of our “relationship” (which was what, a month?), I never talked to him. Or couldn’t even sit beside him because I hate him. One time, he sat beside me and tried to kiss my cheek. I slapped him so hard that he cried.

This, my friends, brings us to the next lesson…

2. Never enter a relationship without love.

Mainly because, duh. You should never settle for anything less than you deserve. And you deserve to be someone that you are in love with.

3. Whatever you do and wherever you go, do not forget to have fun.

Do not take things too seriously.

Or else, you will die early.

Most of my friends now are the ones that I met back in high school. Sometimes, I have these episodes of self-pity, and one of my constant issues is this: Did I not have any friends back in grade school?

Looking back, I was never a part of any group. I never forged any long-lasting relationships. I was never good when it comes to personal relationships and anything that needs camaraderie.

Thank goodness, by sophomore year, I finally realized what my mistake was.

I was too serious. I was good ol’ Miss Goody Two Shoes. I was too sheltered. I was afraid to have fun, because I thought having fun will compromise my grades, my life, my future.

4. Do not change who you are for someone else.

Never ever change yourself (for the worse) just because you think that it will make the one you love stay.

If he truly loves you, then he will accept who you are. He will help you become a better version of yourself.

I committed a grave mistake once, throwing all my morals out the window for someone. It was very foolish of me. It didn’t do anything good really, in any case, it only ruined me.

With this being said, here goes the next lesson…

5. You will only truly be happy once you learn to love and respect yourself.

Eventually, I realized that I don’t need a man to make me happy. I don’t need a man to validate my attractiveness. I need not be in a relationship to realize my worth.

It was only when I spent a couple of years focused on myself did I finally meet The One.

6. Rid yourself from negative relationships.

Oh, the drama. I hate drama.

Frankly, I know people who have more issues than Vogue. It’s not like I can just sever our ties because of these things, that would be very heartless of me.

Just learn to tune out things. Separate the good from the bad.

You will eventually get used to it.

This is it for now. Perhaps I’ll add some more if I get to experience another epiphany this week or something.

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2 thoughts on “Oh, to be young and foolish!

  1. thelifestuffguy says:

    Great list, Erika. I was out walking with my friend and her husky last night, and we were talking about all the great things we did as kids that we wish were still “acceptable” to do as adults (colouring, forgiving people REALLY quickly, running really fast for a few seconds just because it’s so much fun). After reading this, I think I might write my own list-type blog about those things. You wrote this in January, which means you’re 25 now. Happy belated birthday! I’m a January baby too, but I happened a year ahead of you. Anyways, have a great day!

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