To my young self (20 years ago)
Today you will wake up. Posters of Take That and East 17, horses and kittens adorn your walls. A tape deck will have a compilation of pop songs that you’ll know all the words to. You are safe in your bedroom. Your home. You are going to your friend’s house tomorrow it’s her birthday, she’s 15. The age seems so old. As your birthday is the following month you have decided to celebrate together. This girl looks and acts so much older than you. She’s so much more streetwise, so much more cool. She makes you feel cool, safer around her. Untouchable.
You are popular – but you don’t realise that.
You are slim – but you don’t realise that either. You worry about your tummy and your legs all the time. Always comparing.
You are happy, you do well at school. You are cheerful, mischievous, outgoing, smart. The world is at your fingertips. If only you could see the life you have. You believe your parents would protect you from anything. Would support you through anything.
Your first love is AB. He shares the same sense of humour. But aside from a couple of stolen kisses it is nothing but a school crush. Your first real crush though. He makes you laugh. He smiles at you in the classroom. The teachers tell us we’ll get married one day.
There are your friends around school but then this friend who never really fits in. But for some reason you feel compelled to maintain a friendship with her.
Look at yourself in the mirror. You are beautiful. This girl is NOT a true friend. Your parents WON’T support you. PLEASE STAY HOME. Life is not what you think. You are so much YOUNGER than your years. There is NO ONE to protect to. NO ONE to safeguard you.
NOTHING WILL EVER BE THE SAME
And worst of all, you will have NOTHING. Everything will become meaningless. Ruined. Tainted. Damaged. Destroyed. Even YOU.
You are a young girl, you have dreams, you have hope, you have the capacity to trust, you believe in things.
It will all be gone this time tomorrow if you do not heed my warning.