In five years ago, I was 21…
I feel old (I know my boyfriend didn’t like me saying that ‘I’m old’. He wants me to think that I’m still young. Mentally, I feel old, haha). I don’t know if I am doing the math correctly since I am 26 which means in five years ago, I was twenty-one. In fact, I don’t remember what I did when I turned twenty-one.
It was probably bowling or something, I honestly don’t remember…Ah! Wait, I do remember. I didn’t do much on that day. My mom cooked my favorite Filipino dish; Filipino spaghetti (it has the Filipino hot dog, ground beef, tomato sauce with Filipino banana ketchup and of course, the spaghetti noodles). It just my family, my sister’s boyfriend that time, and I invited two friends. I think one of my friends did show up but was late at that time. Yeah, it wasn’t fancy and it wasn’t “party hard ’til you throw up” kind of thing. I remembered showing off my friends with the new car and we went to Food 4 Less for beers. It was Smirnoff beers, but I don’t remember what the flavor was. At that time, I was scared to drink in front of my parents because they got that “I’m judging you” stare. My sister encouraged me to drink since it was my 21st and it was not like I came home drunk or going out to bar-hopping. Anything like that, no.
But yes, a letter to myself five years ago. There are many things and ways that I want to tell myself. List of things that I should do and shouldn’t.
- Don’t put your friends as your first priority. Your family will always be your first priority. I know I value my friends the most. I wasn’t that close to my family and they don’t understand what I was going through: Being Deaf and I was pressured to do well in school because my parents have high expectations of me to do well academically. I’m always an average B. Plus, they wanted me to do better than my sister and be better than my sister which was a lot of pressure of me because I used to look up at my sister. I envied her independence and the fact that she moved out the house at a young age. I was trying to find a way to get that freedom and independence out of the house through college.
- Woman, you gotta eat your vegetable more! I know I, myself don’t eat enough of vegetables back then and now I wish I did. I still don’t like tomatoes (especially when it is sliced thick and seeds included), mushrooms (sliced thick, preferably thin but not used to the taste). I don’t know how I managed to stay thin but I was on carbs mode for a few years later and eating healthy was the last thing on my mind.
- You don’t need to be cool to fit in. Just be yourself. Meaning like you don’t need to be cool and smoke a pack of Parliament between classes in the back of the parking lots where everyone can see you. It’s a good thing that I am not addicted to it. Once in a blue moon, I smoke if I’m buzzed or drunk having a good time. Nonetheless, I shouldn’t be smoking anyways. Be humble.
- Don’t dress to stand out. I honestly look back to myself of how the way I dress and I followed the trends even though I was a broke-ass (relying on my parent’s money to buy me clothes). Stay with neutral colors! There’s nothing wrong with having neutral colors. Once in a while, I can have bold colors or patterns. I need to stay away from floral dresses. I’ve noticed that I was obsessed with floral dresses and I kept buying short floral dresses, I never once buy a long floral dress. Now, I want a long floral dress so it’ll flow and I don’t need to show off my legs. I’m also getting rid of a lot of clothes nowadays because I don’t even wear them anymore. On the side note, never wear pink on any days except home.
- Appreciate the quality time with your family. Every day, I’m always in my room and be on my laptop or phone. On occasionally, I would come out of my room and ask my parents if they’re alright or what they’re watching. Most of the time, my parents will have the tv on Filipino shows or Filipino telenovelas, per se. If I didn’t know about social media such as MySpace, I would’ve more time with my parents. No? I honestly would download more games if there weren’t social media.
- Be honest. Don’t lie to hide your ass from your parents. Maybe then, that bonding with your family brings closure instead of distancing yourself. I have strict parents and very protective. I don’t often have my friends come to a sleepover or going out with friends after 10pm. I didn’t get that kind of privileges like a 21 would have. Being a baby in a family of four, it was difficult to have freedom or independence when your parents are basically hovering in every minute. I get jealous of my friend’s family because they give their children some freedom at probably an appropriate age. I don’t know, it’s probably just me and I need to be more truthful with my parents and maybe more open if they are open to me.
- Focus on school and try to get A’s. I mentioned I’m an average-B person. I never aim to try A because B was good enough for my parents to get their approval. If I get a C, they would wonder why and would come up some fictional predictions of what causing me getting a C instead of a B or an A at least. Try to study harder on passing Physical and Anatomy Class (I failed three times with the same teacher). It’s best to aim high when you’re in school, especially if you’re struggling. Just don’t give up and drop the class in the middle of the semester. Get some tutoring or have really smart friends to help you out 🙂
- Budget. Budget. Budget your money wisely. Spend on the need, not the want. Especially it comes to food and yes, trying new food as well. Korean BBQ, not worthy of your money if you keep thinking that you’re fat or gaining weight from eating KBBQ. Bad habits die hard. Try to save at least 5 dollars a day or maybe a week in a makeshift saving jar. You’ll thank yourself when your family no longer financially supports you after community college. I learned the hard way. Aim your goal to at least 2k to support yourself solely when it comes to rent, bills, car, and others.
I think that’s about it. I know there’s more to say but I can’t think of another one. I do reflect on my past but not too often because then, you’ll comparing yourself in the past based on your actions. What would you say to yourself in 5 years ago? Alright, catch a glimpse of Haya later.