Living the World: Letter to Teens

Dear Child,
The past is not a wonderful place to stay. Dwell on improving your today so your future self will thank you.
            In a few months, I’ll be twenty—but before I hit The Roaring 2.0, let me tell you some pieces of wisdom I gained from my seven years as a teenager. With all my strength, I hope I could encourage you to be brave about each day as a young person. Want to know which age you’ll be most devastated and which one you’ll be shining the most? Heck, there is no such thing! Every year there will be pain inflicted and there will also be beauty. Ditch the idea that “high school will give me the best years in my life” or “Oh I don’t want to be nineteen because I’ll be old and have flabby arms.” High school is horror—I don’t want to come back, except if I’ll want to redo my puberty, then I need major growth spurts. I will start living healthy from puberty up to date if I were to redo it again. College is an eye opener. If in high school, there is Tutorial Mode, in College there is only Start Level 25 and Above. And nineteen? Well, you’re a nova honey! You’re getting better each day. It’s what matters.

            Thirteen to nineteen—it seems like a huge gap in between these numbers; in reality, they are closer than they appear. Cherish each moment as a teenager because it will only come once. Teenage years are a milestone you don’t want to miss out via social media addiction or staycations. These are the years you will learn and discover who you are to the person you can be. Also, you will feel a lot of pain and experience pressure and expectations from your social environments and institutions you are in. So hold on… it gets better.

            Spoiler alert: you’ll be your dream. Yes, you’ll meet a lot of people who would lead and inspire you to your ambitions in life. Here’s the catch, though, there will also be the ones who’d keep you apart from your goals. One is confusion, two is doubt, and three is anyone preoccupied with destroying people’s lives. There will be challenges like, shortage (of cash or transportation), denied admission (from parents), rejections (from college application or internship career plans or love life per se) to only name a few. Not everything will work out (but that is okay.) If something bad happens, it’s not meant for you. When you have to go through the deepest or saddest version of yourself, God wants you to learn something from every experience. Sometimes, it will keep on repeating until you get it.

Remember that before it gets easy, you have to go through the rough parts—believe me, there are plenty. Good news, you’ll survive. Bad news, not everyone will love you. With all your efforts to prove that you’re kind, committed, smart, dedicated, and hardworking comes all their excuses to see the bad in you.. Scornful will be their eyes as they look at you with disgust, without pity or honor. Another spoiler? These people are the ones you love, will love, and loves you or somehow closely related with you. Thing is, most of them you have to see everyday for a year (if you are lucky.) Again, you will survive. Keep in mind that today, you’re a someone but you have to start a no one before reaching now.

No matter how hard you try, they won’t change. Embrace change! Don’t be like everybody because you are more than mundane. Change will keep you growing while these people will stay intact with the past. Let them choose the past while you keep moving forward to the present, changing the future. Unlock your powers to influence by being independent. You’ll see how quickly you’ll recover from the damages. All you need is to believe and trust yourself.

Be Strong. Another important information I would have to tell you is that you need not to trust everybody. Better have a private life than have to express your thoughts, moods, whereabouts, and plans—because someone is carefully spying over you. Be wary that these people are undermining everything that you do… Think of your safety. Your own words can be put against you, so be clever. Be strong, the day will happen when you’ll march down the hallway and everyone will be eyeing on you. Nope, not on your debut darling; not to a party. If you’re lucky, your parents will hug you; but if not, even if you are thinking of their safety, well I’ll leave that a secret. A friend once told me, “If you’re not happy, it means it’s not yet the ending.” I guess she’s right. With all the obstacles I had last year, I realized that if I didn’t let go of the unhealthy people in my life, then I will live everyday feeling threatened. One thing you really need in life than love and peace, is security.

Flash forward today; sometimes I still cannot believe I am where I stand—happy, contented, wiser, and stronger—all because I had a support system. You’ll forget the pain by keeping in mind what you are after and who you are as a person. Fly, travel, drive, walk, run, shoot, and cry. With all the anger that’s keeping you inside, release it while you can. Exercise is your friend—hello to a healthier and sexier version of you. Travel—you are one step to becoming a world-class Filipino engaged with foreign friends and with cultural norms. Drive around town and watch the sunset and wait for the stars. Walk with your friends, run with your cousins, cry with your pillow! You study, you love, you lost, you fail, you become, you succeed, and you discover. In the end, you’ll win. 

Don’t freak out just yet. You’re just getting started.
Take care of yourself, always. Keep in mind the things that are only important because you matter.


Michelle, XX (Kisses, I’ll be twenty soon)

P.S.  Love yourself, too.

Living the World: Letter to Teens Living the World: Letter to Teens Reviewed by Michelle Tan on 10:42 PM Rating: 5

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