One of my favorite plot devices in the Harry Potter series was the use of Hermione’s time turner. Why? Because there are times when I wish I could go back in time and change how I did things. Obviously since I know the future, in hindsight everything is 20/20. Where I am now in life is because of the choices I made, and I’m here where I am for a reason. What I wish I could do was to have an alternate timeline just to see how things would turn out if I did things differently. I’d still end up where I am now, but just to have a look as to “what if I had turned left instead of right”.
So here’s what some of the advice I’d give to my past self, knowing now what I do:
To my 5 year old self: Kindergarten is going to be ok. It’s ok for you to tell your teacher some boy kicked you in the head. It is NOT tattle telling no matter what anyone tells you. Also even though the pizza served in school looks nothing like pizza on TV, it is ok to eat it. Don’t have kids make fun of you for reading. YOU ARE AWESOME.
To my 9 year old self: Don’t give that boy you like a valentine. It’s not going to get you anywhere. Also you’re going to hit a major growth spurt soon. Enjoy being taller than the boys in your class for a few years.
To my 12 year old self: Middle school sucks. Don’t let the kids teasing about your hair,clothes, your name, or even for just being Asian get to you. People are mean and you don’t need/want them for friends. For reals. Also the Beatles are an awesome band. Just saying.
To my 13 year old self: Don’t date that boy who asked you out. Just…trust me on this one.
To my 14 year old self: You probably don’t want to send that letter to that senior from the Scholastic Bowl team from that other high school. While you may end up having a friendship for the next couple of years, is it really worth it? No.
To my 15 year old self: Even though your guidance counselors are telling you otherwise, if you really want to do engineering in college you need to start preparing NOW. Take all the engineering prep classes you can, take computer science, plan on studying hard core EVERY NIGHT. Those kids from NOVA are already ahead of you.
To my 17 year old self: If at this point you don’t know whether you want to go to school for engineering, I highly recommend history. Also this is the last year you will really be close to your high school friends. Enjoy it because it’s not going to last forever. Prom is overrated. BUT if you want to talk to that guy that works part time at Sears, do it sooner rather than later.
To my 18 year old self: STAY AWAY FROM THE BOYS. THEY ARE A DISTRACTION. Seriously. Trust me on this. Go to more football games. Get to know lots of people. Enjoy college life but STUDY STUDY STUDY. Also if you’re going to drink your first beer, don’t make it a Natty Light. Turn off the AIM. TURN IT OFF.
To my 20 year old self: Since you didn’t listen the first time, STAY AWAY FROM THOSE SAME BOYS. THEY ARE A DISTRACTION. Seriously. Trust me on this. Also, is there any way you can invest in a small company called Facebook?
To my 24 year old self: If you start seeing red flags, even if you love the person, don’t ignore those red flags.
To my 26 year old self: You are going to get through this, I promise you. It seems like you want to die at this moment, but you are so much stronger than you think you are right now. And life seems like it’s going to hell but it’s going to be better. I promise you. You’re awesome. Even though you think you’re alone now, you’re going to find some of the best friends you’ll ever have soon. Also, I know you like geek stuff. It’s been kind of dormant for a while but it’s totally cool to go see Iron Man or Thor. You WILL like it. TRUST ME.
To my 28 year old self: I know you keep dismissing this show, but you really should go back and watch How I Met Your Mother. There are situations in that show that will help you so much this year. Also watch your heart and emotions. Don’t fall too hard too fast.
To my 29 year old self: Stop drinking Diet Mountain Dew after 7pm. WILL YOU NEVER LEARN? Also watch out for deer.
To my future self: I seem to keep doing things the hard way in order to learn how to do them the right way. Maybe one day things will change. You’re still awesome though.