I've thought about doing this several times over the years and since I haven't been posting lately (I've been in a dark dark place but dragging myself out now) I thought I would jump back in with a little humour mixed in with my sincerity.
To the 16 year old Me (things I wish I had known Wayyyyyyyy back then)
1. You are NOT fat. I wish you could find a way to feel comfortable in your body and learn how to work your, ahem, assets. They are awesome, you are awesome and you will kick yourself later when you find out the guys you liked actually liked you but were intimidated (see point 2, 3 and 6 for more on this).
2. Wearing clothes 2 sizes too big does not help you hide what you think it does. Work with what you have, flaunt the awesome and at least wear the right size to cover the rest.
3. STOP being so freakin serious all the time!!!! You are young, healthy and the world is your oyster. Reach out to people who try to be your friends, don't shut them out. Party a little bit, make out with more guys. That demeanour that you have when you are shy and nervous - it comes off as being aloof and superior. Work on it, open up and allow yourself to be a little vulnerable.
3. Enjoy being able to sit on any surface in any configuration that you can for as long as you want. Before you know it when you simply sit on a chair your legs and butt will fall asleep and your knees and back will ache. You don't know how good you have it.
4. Your giving nature, your desire to help others - embrace it and run with it. Learn to harness it and use it effectively. Don't let it run wild and run you over and make you question your desire to make the world a better place. Compassion, empathy and understanding are gifts that you have been given. Find a way to celebrate your gifts without losing yourself.
5. You are stronger than you think. The next few years will be rough. so rough. You will make it through and not unscathed but believe it or not these very necessary and painful experiences will help you make it through some extremely difficult times in the future.
6. All those people who seem so self assured and stuck up at school?? Most aren't. Most are just as insecure, if not even more, inside. Some you will get to know later and you will be shocked at how much you have in common. No one feels comfortable going into the school cafeteria alone, some just hide it better. You are all struggling with who you are and who you are going to become (and many who made your life a living hell DO NOT go on to bigger and better things, just sayin).
7. Get contacts NOW. I love you but what were you thinking when you bought those glasses???
8. Stop ducking when someone tries to take you picture. Take lots of pictures of everything you do with your friends. Your memory won't always be what it is today and you will love to reminisce over yearbooks and candid shots. For this to be awesome you will NEED to follow #3!!!
9. You will meet the love of your life and not too far in the future. It will seem like its never going to happen. But it does. Times will be rough at times but he's a good guy and he loves you like no other.
10. When you are 37 years old you will have minor dental surgery. DO NOT try to eat a spicy chicken pizza slice the next day!!!!!