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Dear Younger Self by Rachel
When I think of what my younger-self needed to hear, all I hear is my internal self screaming, “take your dang time!!!!”. Like many others, especially in today’s fast-paced digital world, I was always racing to the next finish line. Grade 6, Grade 8, high school, university, this class, this grade, that event, that exam- I was always running, trying to beat my last personal record. And then…you graduate. All of a sudden, school’s done, I have four papers left to write and then I’m finished my undergrad… how in the heck did this happen?
So please dear young Rachel, before you roll your eyes… enjoy this moment, even if it's an annoying exam or another dentist visit. This is your life and it’s the only one you’re gonna have- so sllooooww down.
(And if you’re reading this and you are anything like me, you won’t want to listen to anyone who tells you to slow down, so maybe try this…)
Think back to the first time you felt like you needed to race to a finish line – whatever that literal or figurative finish line is- for me it was my grade 2 Family Timeline Bristol Board Project – ya, I know you can laugh. But this really felt like the first time that I can remember feeling due date anxiety. Now… take a deep breath and tell your stressed younger-self that everything is going to be okay, don’t race, look around, and slow. it. down.
Hug yourself, and laugh with yourself. You need it.
There will always be the “next important thing” to do, and life happens before, between, during and after that next important due date, so live it. You won’t remember how fast you finished that exam, how quickly you got that promotion, or how long it took you to finish that degree- it will all get done. At the end of your life you won’t think about how fast or slow you made it through. You’ll probably be thinking about the laughs you had while building that snow castle outside with your siblings and your brother had to pee so bad he just did it right there- snow pants and all- you’ll think about how excited you felt the night before the first day of school you couldn’t even sleep. You’ll think about the calmness on Sunday mornings sitting with your mom or dad or partner and just silently enjoying each other’s company.
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So I guess what I’m trying to say is, dear young Rachel… you got this! Stop running, enjoy the damn ride.
Rachel is in her fourth and last year of an undergraduate degree at Western University.
This is a place to see shared stories and experiences submitted by young people. It represents the truth of the people who submitted their stories.