To Me at 17

The hubs and I visited my Nana and Papa last weekend at my teeny-tiny hometown. I had a bridal shower to go to for my high school BFF and we decided to just make a weekend of it and spend some quality time with my family. It was good to unplug for a bit (Nana and Papa have no wi-fi!) and just be. But you know how it is when you are all snuggled up in your childhood home with people who have known you since you were in diapers. Nostalgia sets in for sure. I have been thinking a lot about the girl I was in high school and the ways I have changed and grown since that time. Then, this week while doing my regular blog-trolling, I happened upon Lauren Conrad's blog in which she gave her 18 year old self advice. The timing was perfect and I was inspired. I spent that whole drive to work thinking about what I would tell that 17 year me. Here's what I came up with:

1. Be Brave. Oh hunny, you are about to embark on some big-life changing adventures (hello college!) and you need to put on your big girl panties and embrace it. I know it is so, so scary to leave the only place you have ever known, but let go of that fear and embrace the newness. Don't be afraid to leave your dorm room. But, it is still OK to let Janna drive your car in heavy traffic until you get used to it.

2. Be intentional in your friendships. Growing up with the same people for the last 17 years has made you complacent at working on friendships. They were just built in. You don't know how to work and maintain them yet, and because of this, you are going to lose some really great relationships that you probably would've been able to hang onto for life. This is going to be something you regret in the future.

3. If it isn't drugs or sex, just say yes. - I heard this advice given to a college freshman and while it seems a bit wild, you should really just abide by it. There are going to be so many opportunities that come your way and you need to at least try new things, and if it isn't sex or drugs, it probably won't hurt you.

4. On boys -  Now, I am actually pretty proud of the boys you have dated up to this point, but you are about to have a serious lapse in judgement. Be a little picky. Have some standards as to how you should be treated. It all works out, and you are super happy now, and more than a little embarrassed about that one guy - you will know him when you see him… Also, your next heartbreak will be your worst, it is going to rip out your heart, get confusing, and you still get through it just fine, but it is messy and you should probably not listen to that Faith Hill/Tim McGraw song "Like We Never Loved at All" while walking to class. Also avoid Norah Jones at all cost after this one. Also, say yes to camping. You will thank me later:

5. Study Abroad. I know the thought of that terrifies you, but, see #1. You will never have another opportunity like that, so also, see #3.

6. Stop rushing things. I know you feel like you have to get through school as quickly as possible to be able to start real life and I know that you feel like school is too expensive to drag out - but finishing in 4 years instead of 3 and a half is Ok. Take a light load that last semester and live. it. up.

What about you? What would you tell your 17 year old self?


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