Me at 17

I still vividly remember the day I turned 17. For the weeks leading up to it, I was kind of sad about the birthday. Sixteen just seemed so magical, while 17 was just “ehh,” another year…

Yet, on that November day, I was running up my street, pushing the pace to finish strong, when the song “Letter to Me,” by Brad Paisley came on my iPod.

“And oh you got so much going for you going right
But I know at 17 it’s hard to see past Friday night
I wish you’d study Spanish
I wish you’d take a typing class
I wish you wouldn’t worry, let it be
I’d say have a little faith and you’ll see…”

At the time, I wondered to myself, “What could I possibly think I know this year that I late prove myself wrong about?”

Well, although it’s only been a few years, life has certainly taught me my fair share of lessons. That’s why I thought it would be fun to think about what I advice I would offer in a letter to me at 17…

Enjoy every moment and don’t sweat the small stuff. Prom night is coming up and, sure, it’s your only prom. But, that doesn’t mean it’s the most exciting, best thing ever. Between figuring out your dress, finding a date and thinking about all the other details you will want to micro-manage, just relax and enjoy.

Accept that you are defined by more than one thing. Yes, it is unique that your hair is super, super long. But, it’s also true that you are known for being smart, hard-working and athletic. Cutting off your hair isn’t the end of the world…

See? You can do this…

Let loose, occasionally. You are graduating high school in May. With that, so too ends years of obsessive working, studying and worrying. Now, you’ll have a whole summer to spend time with friends and family. Soak it all in.

Call home. At the inevitable end of summer, you’ll be going to college. Yes, the day will finally come. It will be exciting, it will be overwhelming and it will be exhausting. In addition to sleeping and occasionally working out, also remember to call Mom, Dad and Marian.

Push your limits. As if moving away from home isn’t difficult enough, you are also going to deal with Rush, college classes and feeding yourself. With all of this, push the limits, whether this means dropping out of a sorority…

Or making new friends…

Know that you may get into tricky situations, but that life will go on. Moral of the story is that you may think you know everything, but you don’t. As I’m writing this, you still don’t. Chances are that you never will…

That’s alright, because life is about the journey, not the destination.

Questions: What was your life like at 17? What advice would you give to yourself?


5 responses to “Me at 17

  • fitchocoholic

    Can’t wait for tomorrow’s post!!! I’ll be 17 in December!

  • Jess

    First of all, I love that song.
    I think I would tell myself to relax a little and take it easy, and accept myself for who I am πŸ™‚

  • Katie@ Real Food Katie's Way

    Such a good post! Really and truly I enjoyed reading every word πŸ™‚

    Advice I would give to my 17 year old self:

    SLOW DOWN! Just because you are a young adult doesn’t mean you need to rush every life experience that you will encounter. Let life take it’s course without you rushing it!

    Discover who you are as an individual rather than getting into relationships and letting them define you as a person.

    Discover your self worth before you go settling for the first guy that comes along. Regrets are bound to happen but if you really discover your self worth you will likely have far less of them.

    Lay off the fast food so you don’t have to lose 135 pounds 6 years later!! Trust me, the saggy skin alone is a reason to stay healthy!

  • Sara @ The Bucket List

    Oh my gosh. I LOVE this post!! Love the picture with the toilet paper in the trees in the background πŸ™‚ I may do a post similar to this soon, I think it’s so great to look back and reflect on all that you’ve learned over the years.

  • Alaina

    Oh man, 17…that was 10 years ago! I was a senior in high school and searching for colleges. It was a fun year for me. πŸ™‚

    Haha, the last picture is cute.

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