2. Do not start smoking cigarettes because the boy who broke your heart does.
3. When you want to kill yourself, don’t.
4. Cutting calories doesn’t do anything but make you unhappy.
5. If the number on the scale rises, throw it out.
6. The first girl you ever “date” is going to call the police on you even though she lives three thousand miles away, because you’re going to tell her that you’re not in a good mental state shortly after you’ve “broken up”.
7. When you want to kill yourself, don’t.
8. Break up with the boy who says, “You had a sexy phase!” when you tell him that you’ve dated a girl before.
9. Dating your friends is not always the best idea, but you can still be friends after you’ve broken up with her.
10. Your mother will try to become your best friend because you’re leaving for college soon. Let her.
11. When you want to kill yourself, don’t.
12. Your closest friend will stop talking to you when you leave for college.
13. It’s okay to cry.
14. When you want to kill yourself, don’t.
15. When you cut yourself again, clean and bandage it. Do not be ashamed.
16. Your anxiety is going to try and control your entire life. Tell it to shut the hell up, because you’re trying to live and that task is hard enough as it is.
17. The past has a funny way of coming back in the form of you developing a crush on another friend.
18. Try not to hate yourself for breaking up with your boyfriend.
19. If you’re still smoking, apologize silently to your mother.
Nineteen things I’ve learned before I turned nineteen.
1. Always carry $5 and a lighter with you (even if you don’t smoke).
2. Ask every person you meet how their day is going. Genuinely ask with the soul intention of learning how their day is. Ask the coffee shop employee. Ask the person next to you in line at Walmart. Ask your distant friend. Ask everyone.
3. Take many photos of yourself. Take photos of yourself when you’re happy. Take photos of yourself when you’re sad. Take photos of yourself because there are millions of trees in the world, and we all look at the same sky, but there is only one of you.
4. Stay in contact with your parents. Try not to hate them. They are the reason you have the ability to feel anything at all. Try not to hate your parents.
5. Opening your skin will not set your demons free. Open your heart. Open your mind. Open your hands.
6. Nobody knows anybody completely. That’s okay.
7. Be gentle, but be aggressive. Take a stand. Nobody hears your voice if you stay silent.
8. Respect everybody. We are all humans trying to survive. We all deserve respect.
9. Wearing black will ALWAYS make you feel better about yourself.
10. Always give tips, whether it be a couple extra dollars or a piece of mind. You never know how much you could be helping someone.
11. Change is the only thing consistent in life. Do not allow that bother you. Embrace chance and move with life, whichever direction it chooses to take you.
12. Smile often. Smile at strangers. Smile at your friends. Smile when nobody is looking and you’re alone in your bedroom. Smile when somebody is rambling to you.
13. Body image means nothing. Your body is merely just a seatbelt in the car. Your body is here to protect you. You choose the direction you go, and your body will not hold you back. Only you can hold yourself back.
14. Don’t hold grudges. Don’t allow yourself to hate anybody. Forgive them. Learn to love them for the person you never got to see them to be. Believe that a beautiful human exists in that person. Wish them well.
15. Drink orange juice. Lot’s of it.
16. Don’t allow the opinions of others to choose your destiny. We are all simply trying to live our own life.
17. Sing all the time. Sing off key. Sing in a silly voice. Sing like you’re on stage. Sing no matter who is around. Singing is breathing for the soul. Sing.
18. Take time to think. Write your feelings down. Write letters to the people you love. Texting is overrated and not as heartfelt as a nice handwritten letter.
19. Live for yourself. Breathe for yourself. Do everything in your life for nobody but you. This is your life. This is it.