15 is a very interesting age where we are still figuring a ton of things out — and I say that as if throughout our entire lives we aren’t just figuring things out, but I think you get what I’m saying.
Physically, our bodies are changing.
Socially, we are losing and gaining friends at a very rapid pace.
And emotionally, we are beginning to wrap our minds around the concept of an intimate relationship and what it means to truly love someone.
When I look back on the time when I was 15 years old, I see a very utterly confused, yet curious young girl.
At school, I was very much to myself. I had just endured my first real heartbreak from the boy next door. (No literally, the guy lived across the street). And working to process this while also dealing with the demons that come with growing up, and finding yourself, was extremely hard for me.
At home, it was literally just me. Now I don’t mean this physically because as you may know I am the oldest of five children, both my mother and my father are in the household, and there was even a period of time where various aunts and uncles lived with us as well.
But mentally, I was alone.
I am seven years older than my younger sister, and growing up I couldn’t quite talk to my mother about any and everything under the sun. So I turned to myself and continued to let all of my emotions, experiences, and trials remain knowledge that only I fully knew.
I had never considered myself depressed, but there were many times when I would sit alone in my room and just cry.
I cried because I felt alone. I cried because I felt that literally no one on this planet understood me. And I cried because that was the only way for me to release what was going on in my head.
To combat these emotions, I would constantly focus on the future and my next stage in life. I couldn’t wait to turn 16 because that meant more freedom and not having to be back in the house by 9PM while my friends were out at parties and running around the city. I couldn’t wait to go off to college, because that meant that I no longer had to come home and constantly clean up after my younger siblings. I couldn’t wait to meet a significant other who was just as serious about me, as I was about them.
Fast forward 6 years, I am now 21. I look forward to the days where I can be in the house and in bed by 9PM, cleaning is my way of relaxing, and I have still yet to meet that significant other. Funny how life flips the switch, right?
But I am happy. Honestly, truly, and fully — I am happy.
If I could go back and tell my 15 year old self anything, it would be to BE PRESENT.
Endure the loneliness, because loneliness helps you to appreciate the presence of others.
Endure the sadness, because sadness helps you to appreciate and know when you are happy.
Endure the GROWTH, because the growth helps to cultivate a better you.
But most importantly — seek help, because if you don’t you’ll be forced to find out the hard way what you actually CAN endure.
What does your 15-year-old self desperately need to hear?