Today on the 11th of July 2019 I turn 19.
I clearly didn’t learn my lesson from the “17 things in 17 years” post, because here we are again, with 19 more things I’ve learned in my 19 years on earth. That’s 2 more than last time AND I have to think of different things. Definitely not regretting this. at. all.
Anyway, let’s begin:
1. Despite that feeling that you just can’t shake, people actually like you! That’s right! You’re not (that) annoying and dull, and people actually want to hang out with you! Still not completely sure why…but it’s true!
2. Don’t drink too much gin. You will never live it down and will be mocked endlessly forever. For-ev-er.
3. You can do literally anything you set your mind to (well, maybe not anything, you’ll never be able to roll your R’s so just stop trying, you look like a fool and it’s never going to happen) but most things! Get a job in photography? Check. Getting a plane to another country on your own? Check. Navigating London and its train lines alone? Check.
4. Never EVER, I repeat, EVER attempt to run and jump over things. Especially while on a stage in front of hundreds of people. Your coordination will never be good enough. You absolute FOOL.
5. Similarly, your coordination is also nowhere near good enough to carry boiling hot mulled-wine through a bar whilst wearing ski boots. It was indeed as painful and funny (not for me) as it sounds.
6. However, don’t be too embarrassed about the things that happen in your sit-com of a life – they make great stories. My sister has noticed a theme of me saying – “if I don’t laugh about it, I’ll cry!” which is for sure my motto in life.
7. Go to all the gatherings and parties you can. I know you’re tired and don’t feel like socialising, but you always, always have a great time. Plus seeing friends always makes you feel better!
8. Unfortunately running isn’t for you – as fun as it is, child-Erin messed up your ankles by walking on her tip-toes for 11 years – idiot. It will cause pain you can’t just push through.
9. However, there are other exercises out there for you! Choi Kwang Do is great for confidence and oh man, such hard work (in a good way). Plus who doesn’t love beating up punching bags and occasionally being punched in the face! And when I’m attacked with a knife (which obviously happens on a daily basis) I’ll know exactly what to do.
10. Yes, I am dragging out the exercise points, these last 3 could definitely been merged into one, but guess what – I don’t care. YOGA! Makes you so much less stressed and is great for your terrible back ache (old women? Me?).
11. No matter how much your sister makes fun of you – don’t be afraid to cry at films and TV shows and birthday cards and anything else that makes you emosh. Showing emotions is normal, IBBY. Personally don’t think it’s that weird to have cried at the opening credits of Avengers: Endgame.
And I’m pretty sure everyone cries at birthday cards. That’s not super weird.
12. Always ask people how they are, even the cold callers (they’re always super confused it’s rather amusing). Someone taking genuine interest in how my day is going makes me very happy and I like to try and do the same for everyone I talk to.
13. When someone hugs you, let them be the first to let go. Makes for a few super awkward moments but also some very nice hugs (plus, being called a ‘great hugger’ was honestly the best complement I have ever received in my life).
HOW are we only on 13? I am already struggling.
14. Failing your driving test first try was actually a good thing (well ‘good’ might be too strong…maybe ‘not good but not as terrible as I thought’). I know you couldn’t see it at the time, but it made you a better driver. And made passing 2nd time even more exciting.
15. Don’t be afraid to be your ‘true self’ ew I’m sorry I just cringed at myself typing that. But what I’m trying to say is that only really my family saw my true utterly weird and slightly insane personality, and I dialled it back in front of other people. Because…you know…judgement ‘n’ that. But now, caring much, much less about what other people think of me I act like myself around most people. Which is so much less tiring.
16. Being mistaken for a 13 year-old and constantly ID’d in bars followed by very suspicious looks isn’t such a bad thing. You get away with only paying for a kids buffet meal. That’s it. That is the only benefit I’ve found so far.
17. Don’t worry, no one knows what to respond to ‘you alright?’ as a greeting. Do I tell you if I’m alright? My current mental state? Just ‘hello’? A struggle I face on a daily basis.
18. Keep your life in order by keeping a bullet journal. My monthly calendar and daily to do lists keep me organised. Also, use a dotted notebook instead of lined. Life changing. Don’t call me a stationary nerd.
19. Still haven’t completely got my head around this one yet but, I’m pretty sure talking about your feelings doesn’t make you annoying. I really like listening to people about how they are feeling, but still can’t quite tell other people how I am without feeling guilty. This might be something I still have to learn.
I’ll give you another lesson for free: don’t try and think of twenty life lessons next year. That will be a big mistake.