High school was not an easy time for me. Sharing this content with you is not easy. It is raw, personal, and it is hard for me to talk about. However, I think it is so important to have these conversations so that we can help future generations, especially in a time where it can be even harder to be a teenager. I can’t imagine going through these experiences while also living in the fully digital age of Instagram and TikTok. Maybe you can relate to this post from your own experiences or maybe you are currently at this stage of life and you can find something helpful here.
High school is a small blip in time compared to the rest of your life and the difficult challenges you are facing will come to an end. Making friends was not easy for me. I would eat my lunch in the bathroom and walk the halls almost every single day in Grade 9 so that I didn’t have to awkwardly sit by myself in the café. I clearly remember trying to track the people I saw in the halls so that I wouldn’t pass them a second time and that they wouldn’t know I was walking in circles. It was the most excruciating and slowest hour of my life. I would follow that up by going home and crying to my mom about how horrible I was feeling. I truly believed I would feel that way for the rest of my life. It is really difficult to understand at the time, but it is only four years out of all the years you will live and if you are facing challenges like this, they will come to an end someday.
You can’t force people to like you. All I ever wanted in high school was for people to like me, but there were people who just didn’t like me for whatever reason. I would spend every ounce of my caring and giving heart trying to make people like me and it would only end in my heart being hurt. I have learned that it is okay for people not to like you. Those are often the people you don’t want to be friends with anyways. Spend all of that energy on the people who’d do the same for you and that truly care about you. Your circle of friends will change several times throughout and after high school and that’s okay, it is completely normal and happens to everyone. Learn to let these relationships go and know that something better is on its way to you.
The boys you date will be steppingstones to where you were meant to be. Okay real talk, I had no boyfriends in high school so I’m not the best person to give advice on this. I was the girl at high school dances standing awkwardly in the corner by myself during slow songs. I remember ‘You and Me’ by Lifehouse, in particular, playing at every dance and my heart literally sinking to my stomach every time that song would come on. I would picture myself dancing with the man of my dreams but constantly told myself I was never worthy of that. First off, YOU ARE WORTHY of all of your goals and dreams, no matter what they are. Secondly, life has a funny way of sending us exactly to the place we need to be. I am a firm believer that hardship and difficult times are only a way of making us stronger and leading us to the right person. I am so excited to dance to You and Me with my husband at our wedding next week.
You are exactly who you were meant to me, accept it. It is difficult for me to admit, but I feel like I had such a hard time in high school because I wouldn’t accept the person that I truly was. It is often the desire to be part of the popular group in high school which was the case for me, however I was nothing like those people. Everybody is different and that is okay, it actually one of the things you truly appreciate as you get older. In the moment, I had never realized I was part of the problem but once you are able to accept yourself for who you are (quirks and all) you will gain a world of confidence. This didn’t happen for me until later in life but when I finally did, everything started to change for me.
Your appearance is not the most important thing. I’m not sure if it’s society that makes us this way or that we feel so insecure that we need to focus solely on our looks. In a time where are bodies are constantly changing, it can be a lot of pressure that we put on ourselves. I struggled with my appearance significantly (I would show you a photo, but I think I burned them all). I had severe acne, braces (headgear at night), I was awkwardly tall and went through a very uncoordinated stage, and I also had zero concept of beauty and fashion. I have two pieces of advice here. First, when a family member or friend, compliments you, try your absolutely hardest to accept it because they are right. Second, it is more important to value the way you treat others than how you look. Try to remind yourself that your hair, clothes and make-up do not value you as a person.
Writing this letter brings up a lot of difficult and deep emotions. Please approach my thoughts with kindness and grace and share it with someone you think might be experiencing some of these things.
Song of the Week: Worship You – Kane Brown
Quote of the Week: “Take a deep breath. It’s just a bad day, not a bad life.”
Netflix Show/Movie of the Week: Selling Sunset Season 3