I've been on this Earth for 21.5 years now and I've definitely learnt a few things over the course of them. I never had an easy upbringing - my parents were AMAZING, but life was really hard. From a very young age my Mum has been physically disabled. At the tender age of 3 years old was when it really got worse. My parents compensated the fact they couldn't do things with me with gifts - I never lived without (up to an age), and for that I'm truly grateful. For many years, my parents' lives were taken up by my very ill sister, so again they compensated their lack of time with me with gifts. It was never always like that though, and I won't go into much detail, but things happened, and things got worse. I've experienced a lot in my life, and I don't know whether it's made me a stronger person, or weaker. But I thought I would put into words some advice for my younger self. Maybe it'll help some younger readers out there who are experiencing tough times, and maybe one day it'll help my future children.
- It's OK to be lonely sometimes. I'm the youngest of 3, my sister being 8 years older than me and my brother 11 years older. For a long time, it felt like I was an only child, I got lonely, really lonely and even in my later teens, I was a very lonely person and sometimes now, I feel lonely (I'll go into detail later). A lot of people think that being lonely is a bad thing, and they need to surround themselves with loads of people to feel good about themselves. Those people can be the most lonely because they're afraid to be alone. I get that - but you need to learn to be alone, because you can only ever rely on yourself and people aren't going to be around forever. Being content and comfortable within your own company can make you a much stronger person.
- It's OK to not have friends. Up to about a year and a half ago I had the best of friends, who I'd do anything for, until things happened and we fell out. For most of my life I lived to please the people around me, always putting them first, for the first time I became selfish. After a shitty relationship I decided to be selfish, and I think that lost me my closest and longest friendships. But that's OK, because if they were ever true friends, they would of understood. Up until recently, I hated it. I loved my friends and wished nothing more than to be back with them, but I realised that in my adult life, they wouldn't be good for me. I moved on, and unfortunately I moved on without them. I still have some friends, but I'm not surrounded by hundreds of people that care about me and I've accepted that. I've come to realise I don't need hundreds of people to make me feel better about myself, I just need me and a few select people. People change, and if you change don't be afraid to let go.
- Be happy. For the longest time, I wasn't happy when I thought I was. I was in an abusive relationship and I was so unhappy. I was unhappy at home, at work and in my relationships. I never did a thing about it because I was scared of being alone. I was scared no one would want me. After almost 3 years of being the lowest I'd ever been I knew my happiness was the most important thing. So I let go of everything that haunted me and again, I moved on. I found someone who treated me like a princess and still does almost 2 years on. I'm finally happy in myself. Admittedly, there are things that can really get to me about my past and I certainly have my down days but I'm happy and I will continue to do anything in my power that makes me happy. If your job is getting you down, quit. If your relationship is getting you down, leave. If your friendships are toxic, let go. You can only ever grow as a person once you put your own happiness first before others.
- You don't need to do what other people think you should do. I never went to uni. I did my A-Levels but I was unable to complete my exams due to illness, so I don't have any qualifications in that sense. I got my GCSE's and did well in them. There's so much pressure to go to uni nowadays and it was never something that interested me. I didn't know, and still don't know what I want to do in life so uni was never an option. I never wanted to get into thousands of pounds worth of debt for a degree in something that I wasn't even sure I would get a job in. I've had comments made about my 'intelligence' because I didn't go to uni, but a degree doesn't define me or my intelligence. I've always wanted to be a successful person in whatever I do, and I'm going to be successful, because I have the passion to be so. Heck, I decided to buy a house at 21 years old instead of 'enjoying life' as people like to put it.
- It's OK to be boring. I enjoy nothing more than to stay in, watch endless amounts of The Vampire Diaries or The Originals on Netflix with my boyfriend with our healthy chicken and veg meal and a cup of tea on a Saturday night than to go out drinking. I love nothing more than walks in the country on a Sunday than being hungover eating a Dominoes. I favour tea over Vodka, early nights over late and my boyfriend over parties with my friends. Old before my time? Maybe. Boring? Probably. But that's OK and that's what makes me happy.
There's are hundreds more points I could make, but maybe I'll save them for another post. Let me know in the comments what you would advise to your younger self. I hope you enjoyed something more personal and different.
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