All the things I WISH I knew in high school
High school is not without its trials and tribulations we all know that. It’s been over ten years since I last opened my locker before heading to home room and yet everything I felt during those four angst-filled years are not forgotten — not by a long shot. I have spent a lot of time reading through articles that remind us all of the things we didn’t know then, but sure know a lot about now and to be honest, not much has changed.
It’s the typical things we list off that will still resonate for years to come like the fact that being “cool” is not that important, or how cramming the night before a big test will psych you out worse than if you had studied your notes all along. We see these ideals played out in movies and books, and end up discussing them over coffee with our friend’s years after it actually matters. Beyond the wisdom we gain about friendship, boys, and the meaning of life are some other important truths that we probably now chalk up to common sense. With that in mind, let’s see if our scores match up with a list of things that could have altered our decisions had we just known better.
One day boy bands will be cool
I don’t know about you, but I was teased all the time for my obsession with boy bands. Never did I hide the fact that Nick Carter was my future husband or that I had watched the music video for NSYNC’s ‘Tearin’ Up My Heart’ every night when I got home. My love for boy bands made me an easy target for public ridicule. If only I knew that in my early 20s I would attend a Backstreet Boys concert with a car full of guys that, to my surprise, knew every word to every song and were actually proud of it. Boy bands would someday become kind of cool to like and if I had that knowledge back then, I would have been schooling everyone.
Read the actual book
My former teenage self had no interest in reading a book when there was so much music listening and hangouts to be had. But, I wish I had left the CliffsNotes on the library shelf and the movie versions of books at the video store because these “summaries” did not help me to better understand ANYTHING. It also created more work for me later when I had to re-read said books to join in on all those worthy intellectual convos with my “grown up” friends.
Eat every single cupcake in sight
You know that scene in ‘Freaky Friday’ when Jamie Lee Curtis and Lindsay Lohan are in the car after exchanging bodies and Jamie starts eating fries and explains to Lindsay how she hasn’t touched them in years, but now she is a teen again and finally can? Ya — it’s so true. The same goes for cupcakes, cookies, and all the ice-cream you could ever dream of. Eat it all now because one day your body won’t know how to bounce back. Also, life is too short to worry about it.
Learn a second language. No, ACTUALLY Learn it.
It doesn’t matter if it was French or Spanish, learning a second language is actually useful. For me, everything my teacher said went through one ear and out the other. Someone should have told me that learning a second language gives you a huge advantage later in life for not only travel, but in getting a job as well. This was priceless information being held captive from me and ultimately ruining my chances to have a leg up later in life. Then again, this was likely the first thing I was told by my teacher during class and if I had bothered to listen for even one tiny second I would have known all along just how vital another language could be.
Be kind to you skin
I was more than guilty of popping all of my zits and poking and prodding at my face like it was some sort of experiment. Little did I know that getting handsy is a price I would pay later in life. So, to all my teens out there; let nature run it’s course, because the creams you may have to buy later to diminish the scares are super expensive.
Keep your clothes
Fashion always makes a comeback and after years of living through trends both good and bad I can finally attest to this claim. I wish so badly that I had saved some of my most prized articles of clothing from my teen years. To think of all the money I would have saved if I had just held on to those wide leg bell bottom jeans just a little bit longer. The trends always come full circle and if I had decided to keep my clothes from my high school days I would not only have my hands on a hot “new” trend, but it would also be considered vintage — double win!
Write the good things down more often
It was easy to scribble away in my journal about the boys who broke my heart, and why my BFF and I were fighting. However, I seemed to lack entries of happier moments spent with friends and family probably because I was out living those moments, but it still would have been nice to capture them. After all, the happy memories are always more fun to look back on.
Stop messing with your eyebrows
As a gal with a limited tolerance for pain I somehow thought it would be a swell idea to ditch the professional waxing and start plucking my brows on my own. It was pre-mature of me to think I could shape my own brows because the minute I tried to even them out, it all went to crap. Before I knew it I had plucked away a chunk of each and I am still paying the price today. Don’t mess with your brows because one day you will want them to be massive and full and if you plucked them all away at fourteen, that just isn’t going to happen.
Take more pictures
I wish I had taken pictures of every single thing I did and everything I ever wore. Capturing photos of your hairstyles and unique fashion sense will provide a non-stop laugh fest for you and your future child. Who knows, it may even help you teach them a lesson or two about what you wish you knew when you were their age.
But, perhaps the most important lesson to learn when you’re trying to figure it all out in high school is this: ENJOY being yourself because that is one thing you can’t actually screw up.