Natalie Rohman

A Chicago Girl Paving Inspiration

10 Things I Wish I Could Have Told Myself in High School | A Letter to my Little Sister

I'm already halfway into college and I'm still fathoming reasons I made it through high school and how that all even happened. I had one of the most positive roller coaster rides in high school and managed to survive and experience as many things as I possibly could. Two years later, and I don't know what the hell I'm doing or would like to do yet, but that's okay because it all works out in the end. Or so we hope.

I spent half of my high school career wondering what my purpose was and the other half wondering what my purpose was going to be when I graduated. What I was going to do and where I was going to go. High school stressed me out the most sophomore and senior year. Mainly because I didn't make the softball team and I was waiting on a scholarship I heard back from a week after I graduated. So, you can say things got a lil crazy in my mind. And now my youngest sister is going to graduate this year and I thought this would be a nice post for her to look at (if she even dares to). 

There are some things I wish were put into perspective for me before I left for college, but gradually I managed to figure these out on my own. Even if you aren't going off to college, maybe these help remind you that there are some things we need to accept in life. I'm going to be honest here and say that there will be difficult things that happen to us in this transition and you will be okay. 

You are Going to Get Through It
In high school and in college, you are going to have bad days. You might get a D on a paper, you will get lost, you may feel stranded at school, you will want to come home everyday when you can't, you will miss your family, but it is all going to be just fine. There is someone there supporting you and ready to listen to you whenever you need. These little obstacles will pass and you will find a sunnier day ahead.

The Little Things Do Not Matter
You will stress over a group project, worry about how you're going to eat in the dining hall alone, not have best friends right away, or any other small stress that might bug you. You cannot let yourself sweat the small things because they will not serve you in the future week, month, or year from now.

You Will Lose Friends
You are going to lose high school friends and that's just a part of everybody leaving home and growing up. You need to know that not everyone is going to "stay in touch" with you forever. While it is easy to Snapchat and all that with your friends, it will never be the same as meeting up in the lunchroom everyday and having that same group of people to talk to. Your entire friend sphere will change and you will have to accept a new diversity of people into your life because college is all about new perspectives. 

The College You Choose Does Not Matter
Any college you end up choosing will give you the education and experience you want no matter what because it is what you ultimately make of it. My college experience so far has taught me to see the world differently more than high school ever did and I want you to not worry about the superficial things such as the college you pick or the fun parties everyone else is going to. There is so much more to college. 

Not Knowing Your Path is Okay
You are going to get confused and feel like everyone else knows where they're headed. You can't think this. The way we compare ourselves to others gets the best of us and distracts us from what we need to focus on in our own lives. The more we worry about others, the less we achieve. Why put that much pressure on yourself? 
You Will Have Regrets
You are going to second guess yourself at times. You will ask yourself if you could have done things differently in high school and made other choices in college. You might regret not auditioning for something, putting in more work for an exam, or all of the above. Worrying about what happened and what could have happened is not entirely in your control. 

You Will Fail
You are going to totally not understand a chapter and completely bomb a quiz or a test. However, using these failures as growth will only help you succeed. Accept failure, but don't get discouraged from it. 

Money Does Not Always Leave You in College
I thought that I was going to be broke my entire time at college, but there are many ways you can generate money throughout college that made me feel financially secure enough. Budgeting and taking note of expenses for one thing will help you not blow all your money, but finding an on-campus job, babysitting on the weekends, or selling clothes online are great ways to make extra cash. Your wallet can survive if you are smart about it. 

You Will Feel Alone at Times
It is going to feel totally scary and awkward when most of your days are without the normal crew of people you see and talk to. You will not be with your best friends and you are going to feel like there is no one around to be your friend. In reality, everyone is in the same boat looking for someone to eat with, talk to, and to feel less uncomfortable with at school. Say hi to someone, but also embrace getting to know yourself more by yourself. College is about learning to be alone with your thoughts. 

People are There to Help and Support You
No one just hands you the batan and says, "you're on your own forever". You have a family back home that loves you and a school of advisors and professors that are there to help you and to make your college experience worthwhile. There is no penalty for asking for help. No one will make fun of you. No one is going to judge you. Do not feel embarrased for being homesick. It takes time to adjust and you are not in it by yourself. 

Emily, I hope you have a wonderful senior year and I know you will succeed in your college adventure to come. Things will come and go, challenges will arise, but great things are going to come out of it all. You are smart, beautiful, and strong enough to tackle anything and everything you set your mind to. I love you derp. 

Your big sis,
Natalie 

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