OMGEE it’s been 15 years since I graduated high school.
Like seriously, when, how and why did time pass like this?! As I reflect on this mind-blowing revelation and on all that has transpired in my life since I was a precocious teenager I wonder what are the things I wished I did differently. How would my life be if I’d did that instead of this? So here are 4 things I wish I would have known then that would have most definitely changed the outcome of some of my experiences.
ABSOLUTELY UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES DO YOU GET A CREDIT CARD – Credit cards are really the bane of my existence. It really didn’t hit me how much debt I was in until I lost my job and I had to have a come to Jesus moment with my finances. When you have more in credit card debt than money in your savings account it’s a problem. A big damn problem. When I think of all the things I could be doing with my money instead of paying down balances I want to kick myself.
It’s Ok to Make Friends with White Folks – Ok, so I know that sounds bad but let’s delve into this further. I went to a predominately white institution for undergrad and I did not make a single connection or friendship with anyone White. I didn’t realize it at the time but I was so fixated on creating a “Black experience” to make up for the decision not to go to Hampton, that I didn’t even bother to connect with anyone who wasn’t Black. That’s extremely problematic, completely stupid, hindering and small minded. On top of that, so many experiences have shaped my attitude towards White people. I mean I’m a Black woman from Texas, so I know what straight up blatant racism, microaggression, and ignorance look like. And full disclosure, I always thought of White people as the proverbial enemy. I was taught either inadvertently or outright that they could not be trusted so I made it a point not to include them in my space. Come to find out that all shades of people can’t be trusted. SMH Had I developed meaningful relationships early on then I could have been had some different experiences and opportunities and met some great people.
Don’t Waste Your Time on These fools! – The biggest distraction and waste of regrettable time I’ve spent post-high school is dealing with these no count fools. Don’t get me wrong, I am a hopeless romantic and I love love and I’ve had some great experiences with some men. But chile when these men wanted out I should have just let them leave. I regret spending even one ounce of my energy, time, or breath trying to convince them to love me. And when the holy spirit was telling me something was amiss with a guy I should have just RAN instead of trying to “explore” it further. Who the hell did I think I was? Carmen Sandiego?! Boy Bye!
Love Thyself – 18-year-old Brittany had so many insecurities and although I may have seemed confident at the time I was faking it until I made it. In high school, I had no clue what my strengths and weakness were. Who does at that age? It wasn’t until I moved to DC that I really started to learn about myself and grow to love me wholly. I wish I had embarked on this journey of self-discovery earlier. I would have sho nuff avoided some situations. I wished I’d been more aggressive and seized different opportunities sooner especially in crafting a career. I thought I was unattractive and fat and talentless in high school. So much of my perception of what and who I thought I was were rooted in other people and the media. I wasn’t self-aware at all and self-awareness is vital to your journey because it will keep you grounded in reality. OAN I will fight Thanos for that body I had in high school. Like seriously. If I would have had the confidence I have now in that body…
Although I wished I’d done some things differently my journey is mine and it’s shaped me to be stronger, resilient, innovated, confident and loving. Who’s to say a different path taken would have been better. One thing I vowed to do when I was a little girl was to have amazing experiences and live my best life and so far I have. Truly, I’m blessed! I’m looking forward to continuing my journey and evolving and having more awesome experiences.
Amen to the thoughts on the plastic devil!! Time flies!!! That’s the beauty in growing older is learning to reflect on times past and being able to gain life lessons that you can share with the next generation… thanks for sharing