What I Would Say To My Nineteen and Twenty-Three Year Old Self
For those that are self-aware, you probably look back and realize how much you've grown over the years. There may be pictures that you come across and you say to yourself, "Why the hell did I do that or look like that?" Then the memories come flooding in and you can recall exactly what you were going through and how you were as a person. You are a different person today and you are so grateful that you are. It's a sign that you are someone who is conscious of your own character, which I applaud you because believe it or not, not many people are like that and choose not to grow.
I am a person who is highly conscious of herself, a person whose in-tuned with her emotions, feelings and character. I am not perfect and never claimed to be. I make the effort and choice to better myself everyday. I am always seeking to be the best version of myself-not for anyone-but for me.
When I reflect on who I was five years ago, or a year ago, I can tell you exactly who I was. For some of you who have known me and followed along for that long or even longer, can probably remember. Here I am going to share with you what who I was five years ago and a year ago. I am going to share with you what I would say to myself in those times.
Five Years Ago
Where was I five years ago? I was in my second year in college, transferring back to live in my city and save money on the dorm life because that added up. I was highly aware of my finances as such a young age. I was a straight 4.0 GPA student, trying to prove her work ethic not only in my classes but people around me. I was a naive, lost girl who still had a heart of a five year old (I still do). I was so lost in college of what I wanted to do and be. I was very quiet, timid, shy and had no self-confidence. I had my time management skills on point but I was lost, confused and trying to not be a broken girl anymore. I was a broken girl in the sense that I cared too much for others that I had no boundaries and I had people take advantage of me. I was looking for love in the wrong people. College was a place to learn and grow which I did throughout the years. However, the first two years were like a lost time for me. I was facing problems with people who were "friends" and a relationship that just took from me. As a person who had so much to give, people sensed that and were coming back to take. I let that go on for so long and I look back at this young nineteen year old girl.
If I were going to say anything to this nineteen year old me, I'd say,
Keep going. The people who are meant to be in your life will be there. Don't be naive, but still keep your genuine heart because people will want you to turn cold. You are not that kind of person. Do not continue to open doors that God is trying to close for you. He's doing it for your own good. That relationship is going to cause you anxiety and pain, and they are just taking advantage. Leave people who try to come back and take. You will find the strength and will leave them. Continue to build yourself, build your self confidence and your boundaries. Build your work ethic because it's going to take you where you want to in life. Start listening to your gut. What doesn't feel good, you have to get rid of. Believe that there are new opportunities and blessings coming. And you keep wandering near the study abroad department, thinking if you should do it. Do it. Next year you will go back and go to new places that will change your whole life. Don't be afraid babygirl.
A Year Ago
It's crazy when you look back a year ago. You make plans and one day can change your whole life. A year ago, I was back in New England from living in Miami. I found work after two months and I was freshly living with an ex-partner which I had no business in being in the first place. This time a year ago, I wasn't in the best living situation but I was in a better situation than I was in Miami. I was going through a lot of personal things that just weren't settling well with me. Although I was a liberated young woman coming from Miami, traveling to a lot of new places, I wasn't free anymore but I was growing in other ways.
In my work, I got a higher position which to this day I am grateful for because I learned and gained a lot of skills that will take me further in my career. I was happy in the sense that I was able to develop administration skills, learned how to manage a budget, hire, train and manage a team. Also I learned just how to run a program in the work I enjoy and I really felt like I was growing professionally. I had two great teams that I was happy to be with and my work position was definitely better than the one I had in Miami. Everything happens for a reason. I was grateful that everything seemed to be working out and it was. I got my new first car and I received a raise. I was trying to adjust to a new chapter in my life.
However, good times only last for so long. With the good comes with the bad.
What I would say to myself a year ago would be,
Listen to your gut. Although you are making decisions now that makes sense, truly listen to your intuition. If it doesn't feel right, get out of there. Don't try to rationalize it. If someone or something is hurting you physically, mentally and emotionally, take action and get the hell away. Build your self-confidence and remember your worth. This will be another tough year for you because you are going to suffer things you never thought in your life you would. No one will know. But it will be okay. You will survive. Just don't go back. And if you move out once, don't return. Continue to listen to feedback in your position from your superiors. Learn from your employees and from your supervisors. They will teach you a lot. Babygirl, use your voice. Use your damn voice. In the end you will be free and better than ever. Stop letting people use you.
As I lay here thinking about this exact moment, I am grateful. I am at peace. I am genuinely happy. Today, I am in the best, safest living situation I can be. I am with a family that loves me and surrounded by real love. I am making choices that I get to do and I am finally feeling liberated. I am in a position where I am making the best out of it. I have plans and doing projects that I love and I am no longer suffering. I am no longer silent. I am using my voice. I survived a lot of things from challenges and pain that one day I will speak on. But today, I am moving and looking forward to new blessings and opportunities. I have a stronger relationship with God and with my amazing mother. After opening up about things with her, we both went through similar experiences which made us become even more closer. I have some things planned in the moment, but with patience and with God, it will be revealed soon. I am taking care of myself emotionally, truly loving my whole self and validating myself every day. I am more confident than ever and I will continue to not just grow professionally but personally.
What I would say to myself today,
You are exactly where you are supposed to be. You are a survivor and you are finally free. You listened to your intuition and God. You are building your respect and boundaries but you still have some work to do. You got to the point where you are using your voice and never forget that. Continue working hard and staying positive because it's going to take you places. Have faith and continue staying enlightened. You have a good heart, but now you are wiser and more protective. Stay educating yourself. You aren't going to be naive anymore. Everything will work out in the end for you. I'm so so proud of you.
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