I’ve been decluttering my computer files when I came upon a letter I made to my 18-year-old self from my present self at the time. It reminded me of the same existential crisis I experienced when I graduated from college. Things aren’t happening to my own accord. I was bothered by the problems I can’t solve instead of the challenges I already conquered. I simply lost the motivation to move forward in life.
This letter is an eye-opener. It made me realize that if I was able to make it when I was 18 or 20, I can do it now that I am older, wiser, and braver.
Dear 18-Year-Old Self,
Sherlene, wake up from your senseless daydreams! It is time to digest reality. This is reality. It is not a love story of Nicholas Sparks or Paulo Coelho’s follow-your-dreams tale. Life is not a bed of roses. Challenges come your way. Failure is at its peak. People are not always good. Bad people are everywhere. They will pull you down and make you feel bad and inferior. But do not be afraid. These circumstances will make you stronger and better. You have God, your family, and friends who care for you and are always there to support you in your endeavors. I am writing this letter to you because I’d noticed you’d changed.
You are not the same enthusiastic, diligent and motivated Sherlene I know. I understand your reasons. Everything is happening against your will. But please don’t let these little wounds to change you for someone you are not. You aren’t here to please everyone but to please yourself with high grades, good friends, and good stuff. Also, do not allow unexpected circumstances to destroy you. I told you. You have your loved ones at your side. You have started out great and please continue with the good work. You may not get what you want but I know someday, you will have what you need. And that’s better. Let God. His time is the best.
I hope this will inspire you to go back to your better self. I would love to see that.
An Afterthought. Reading past pieces like this doesn’t only make me think of the life challenges I overcame but also how far I’d come in the writing department (even though I still can’t surpass literature legends and icons). If not for the good message it conveys, I wouldn’t post it. The sentences are okay but don’t make sense together. I could have done better. Anyway, better done than perfect.