20 years ago on this day I was born. It’s hard for me to believe and probably a little harder for my mom. I’ve lived for two decades, yet when I was born everyone was convinced the world would end the minute it turned into the year 2000. I barely made it as a 90’s baby and somehow came into the world on the Marine Corps birthday, Semper Fi. I’m young and have (hopefully) another 80 years to go. To some I know nothing, but I don’t think that’s quite true. I’m aware that I have a lifetime of things to learn, but I’ve learned a lot in the past 20 years. Here’s what I came up with.
- I learned to talk, to walk, to run, to think, to understand, and to write. Yes that may have all happened in the first six years of my life, but c’mon. That is still pretty dope.
- I learned to be independent. My grandmother would say I was born with it, but I think I learned it. Part of it from the people who brought me up, from my parents divorce, understanding I have siblings who need me, and when I learned that only you can fight for yourself in life.
- I learned about love. It started out with my family right after birth; I’ve been blessed to have an accepting and welcoming family to always turn to. Then I learned to love my friends. I learned how it can fix the broken and hurt like hell.
- I learned I can overcome anything, even if it may not feel like it. The world isn’t always so nice, but I’ve survived this far. I think I understand the rollercoaster it is.
- I learned that people make mistakes. I’ve seen people do it and end up with regret or not have a care in the world. I’ve seen people apologize and people ruin friendships. I’ve made my own mistakes, some worse than others, but all moments I have learned from.
- I’ve learned it’s okay to be alone. That it doesn’t mean I can’t go to people, but it is a time to be myself. It’s a time to reflect and take care of myself. I will never be fully alone because I’m surrounded by people who care about me.
- I’ve learned that it’s good to change who I am and to figure out who I am. I have changed drastically three times: when my parents got divorced, when I became overwhelmed by my mental disorders, and when I started college. All have made me who I am and I would not trade that for the world.
- I’ve learned that when bad things happen it usually is for a good reason. I lost everyone from high school over something so stupid. I then realized it was for the best because I had outgrown them. We didn’t have the same values or dreams. I wasn’t the person I used to be.
- I learned that I don’t have to be the person everyone wants me to be. I tried a major I had thought I wanted; what I thought everyone wanted for me. It had a safe and secure future, something I had strived for and the reason I had worked so hard. I changed it and found who I really am and who I really want to be.
- I learned it’s okay to share who you are with the world. I was so caught up trying to hide my mental health that I realized I struggled to open up about anything. So I became an open book. This is it, this blog is my book. Thank you for reading.
- I learned that it’s okay to not be who I wanted to be. In elementary school I thought I’d make a lot of friends in middle school, join the cheer team, and get straight A’s. I struggled with social anxiety, got cut at tryouts, and got my first C. In middle school I thought I would be the star of my high school lacrosse team, be prom queen, head cheerleader and date the quarterback. Absolutely none of that was even close to happening, but I was okay with that. I didn’t have to be anyone else, except me.
- When in doubt, study. Always study. If not for a test or a quiz, then for life. The more you know the more you can do. I have a lot more I need to learn in life. I’m sure I will continue to grow as I further figure out who I am and who I want to be.
For now November 10th stands as my birthday, I’m patiently waiting until it goes national and gives kids a day off from school. Thank you for reading this, for sticking by me, and helping make my last year so great. This blog has helped me in so many different ways and I am so excited to have it keep growing with me.