A couple of weeks back, I attended a reunion at my primary school. It was the 25th anniversary of the school’s opening, where headteachers, teachers and students past and present reunited for tea and cake, to catch up with old faces and reminisce over the school photographs of every class since the beginning,
It was so lovely to see my old teachers, albeit a little strange to get used to the fact that they weren’t going to tell me off for talking or giggling or being too loud. And once I’d made it through the awkwardness of introducing myself – since I’ve lost my puppy fat and dyed my hair red and none of them recognised me – the adult conversation flowed.
I attended with one of my friends whom I met at that school nearly 20 years ago, and who I’m still close to now. That made me feel pretty old (I know, at 23, really?!)
Although it was such a long time ago now, that school was essentially where the person I am today began to form – only a lot littler and cuter and frecklier.
It got me to thinking what a perfect time being a six year old was, where my only worries were coming up with witty comebacks to the boys’ and their variations of ‘ginger’ jokes, choosing who my best friend would be that week and deciding what bow to wear in my hair that day,
Though as lovely as that little life seems, I’m sure when I’m older with a mortgage and a family, I’ll be writing about how lovely it would be to be 23, for my only worries to be about what my future will hold, which country to travel to next and losing my mobile phone.
If I could, I’d tell my six year old self to smile at those ‘ginger’ jokes, as that red hair will leave you laughing at boys one day. I’d also advise her to pick a couple of best friends and keep all of them for every week, as you’ll be needing them a lot, forever. And I’d break the news to her that sadly, worrying about how to wear your hair will actually always be a major life concern.
So today, because I can, and it’s not too late, I’m giving some advice to my 23 year old self: stop worrying, see what happens, say ‘yes’ to adventures, say ‘no’ to negativity, laugh always, be grateful, and make 43 year old you very proud.