So recently it dawned on me that, wow, I’m 27. That’s almost 30. Almost an adult (are we ever really adults?!) Then my mind began to wonder, to a certain moment I encounted at school.
It was lunch time, again, the bell ringing, everyone running to their favourite lunchtime spot. I’m in year 7 – 11 years old, not even a teenager yet. My friend group are okay, they don’t really like me much and the feeling’s mutual… but I hang around with them because I don’t want to be on my own. We always go to the same spot by the canteen and the school bully always appears. She has a nasty face, and horrifically piercing eyes that scare me instantly. My friends know she picks on me and despite my pleas we never find a new lunch time hangout, so I put up with it. She calls me names, throws food at me and the one thing I hate most – she pulls out my ponytail. A 11 year old girl is self conscious enough, now I have to go fix my hair somewhere and I just want to cry. I hate lunchtime. My friends watch for a while, then walk off and leave me with her, I don’t really know why I call them my friends.
I don’t really know why I call them my friends.
A few years ago, said bully served me a drink in a bar near where I live. The satisfaction of knowing I was better than her was really all I needed. Of course she didn’t even recognise me, she probably picked on hundreds of other girls after me, but I will never forget that face of hers, and her nasty soul. However, seeing her made me realise how insignificant she is to my life, and how actually if anything it taught me a few things..
So, guys, you’re probably wondering where I’m going with this post. Well, I recently posted a photo on instagram (here) and the comments almost shocked me. So many of you said you “needed to read that” or felt better for reading it and it struck a nerve deep inside my little worried soul. When I was younger, I really did worry myself silly about the smallest things and I guess it’s when you get to 27 you realise that these things don’t even cross your mind anymore. So, some of the things that I have learnt in my older years? Let’s take a look…
It’s not important to have a high friend count.
I literally have a handful of friends that I want to spend time with, talk to daily/weekly and feel good around. My Mum is my best friend and I’m not afraid to admit it! A friend that makes you feel bad about yourself, makes you sad, worries you, and so on, is not a friend. They are toxic and toxic friends are simply no good. Instead of wasting time on people no good for you, spend time with those that are – your family for instance, close friends you’ve lost contact with because you’ve been too busy with the toxics. If you don’t have friends, and you worry about being lonely – don’t – friends will come along when you least expect it, just make sure they know the real you and love you for it.
“You wouldn’t go drink a bottle of toxic waste, so don’t spend time with a toxic person.”
You don’t need to look “perfect” all the time.
If this was a worry of mine over 10 years ago, then I dread to think what young people (I say that like you’re aliens..) are going through in todays world. Social media has not only become amazing but it has also become quite damaging if used in the incorrect way. Pictures of perfection are plastered all over our screens and we can’t really avoid it (I wrote more about that here) BUT that does not mean you should begin to think of yourself as not good enough. Everyone is beautiful in their own unique ways, some have six packs, some have long blonde hair, some are blessed with the big ol’ jugs, and well.. some aren’t. Can you imagine how boring the world would be if we were all the same? Nipping to Tesco and you think you recognise everyone.. oh, that’s because they are all identical to you. No thank you! I love to be different, I love having quirks. I spent years hating my dimples – now they are probably one of the things that makes me stand out from the crowd. I used to wish I could slice off my hip bones (yeah, seriously!) and now I realise that makes me a woman. I even used to think I had big massive man hands, never wore rings and never painted my nails, just incase it brought attention to them. How absolutely ridiculous is that?! Love yourself, you will only ever be one of you so make it count.
You know those things called parents? They speak the truth…
Ah parents, guardians. Those annoying people that tell you what to do, boss you around… look after you, provide for you and love you.. Oh yeah, those. Well, I can safely say – they kinda know what they’re talking about. When I was younger I couldnt even imagine my parents being young, surely they’re born old right?! Nah, they’ve been there my friends. They have been 11, 16, 20, 27… believe it or not! They have a good few years more experience than you and actually their advice speaks the truth. Nowadays if I need help with something, my parents will be the first people that pop into my head, fancy that hey! All I’m saying here (because we don’t want our parents to jump on their moral high ground now do we?!) is that, listening to them isn’t so bad – it might even help you out.
So there we go, a few things I’ve realised now I’m old and humble. Please do leave in the comment what you might have learnt over the years too, I’m interested in hearing some of yours! For now though, here an old photo of me from my school days.. just to prove that I was also, once a young(er) person. 😉