Dear 18-Year-Old Me,

Hey girl, it's you, 10 years from now. Just felt like reflecting a bit and thought I might fill you in on what's headed your way. You went to school for exactly what you'd planned, teaching, but are not currently using that degree anymore. But it's okay! Business was always a passion that you didn't think you would pursue but I know you're probably babysitting as you're reading this since you're always hustling and trying to fill your time making money. Turns out, you'll continue down the business path after stumbling for a bit. It's what fills you.

In your next 10 years you'll live in Europe and Asia, travel the world and come back wanting to travel more. Don't pass up any trips because you're a picky eater, I promise you'll get over that and go on to help others with the same issue. Yes, I know how crazy this sounds.

You've found yourself a great guy -- actually, you already know him and have known him your whole life, but I won't spoil the surprise. (Any guesses?) You share entrepreneurial spirits and aspirations to work from anywhere. Excited to see what the next 10 years holds. The heartbreaks along the way will seem impossible to get through, but be open to the support that's offered to you and later on don't forget who was there when you really needed it.

Know that no matter how it feels in the moment, you will ALWAYS figure out a way to get through. No matter if it's a job, a fight with a friend, scrambling to pay rent, or getting stuck in a broken-down car. Everything is fixable.

I know you'll roll your eyes at this one, but family is everything. We are so lucky to have the parents we have and the 2 brothers, who currently at 18 absolutely fucking piss you off, but it gets better. Everyone gets closer with distance and college will make you homesick more than you expect. Mom, Dad, Danny and Peter will be your rocks. And your cousins, aunts and uncles will always have your back.

The girls on either side of you right now will live further away in 10 years but nothing will change. You'll get to celebrate all the amazing things they accomplish. Lean on them, call them when you're sad. Hug them when you're lucky enough to be with them. Most aren't lucky enough to have friends that last decades.

Get up and look in the mirror. You are not fat and the stretch marks on your hips from your growth spurt in 6th grade are a part of you and something to be proud of. You'll never have a thigh gap but you'll find some brands that fit your curviness. Hint, The Loft. You'll have to replace your favorite jeans when they rip in the thighs from rubbing together. Toss them and treat yo self.

Do you very best to collect memories rather than things. Keep a journal. Take photos. Write letters. SING. Don't give weak handshakes or hugs. Smile often, and remember that hair grows back. Do the thing that seems scary, you won't regret it. You'll have very few regrets in the next 10 years, and they're only the things you were too chicken to go for.

When you're down, read this. Or write. Or call Mom.

You have so much to look forward to.



Every photo tells a story but remember this, there was a story teller behindthe lens..jpg