"Nineteen things I’ve learned before I turned nineteen.
1. Always carry $5 and a lighter with you (even if you don’t smoke).
2. Ask every person you meet how their day is going. Genuinely ask with the soul intention of learning how their day is. Ask the coffee shop employee. Ask the person next to you in line at Walmart. Ask your distant friend. Ask everyone.
3. Take many photos of yourself. Take photos of yourself when you’re happy. Take photos of yourself when you’re sad. Take photos of yourself because there are millions of trees in the world, and we all look at the same sky, but there is only one of you.
4. Stay in contact with your parents. Try not to hate them. They are the reason you have the ability to feel anything at all. Try not to hate your parents.
5. Opening your skin will not set your demons free. Open your heart. Open your mind. Open your hands.
6. Nobody knows anybody completely. That’s okay.
7. Be gentle, but be aggressive. Take a stand. Nobody hears your voice if you stay silent.
8. Respect everybody. We are all humans trying to survive. We all deserve respect.
9. Wearing black will ALWAYS make you feel better about yourself.
10. Always give tips, whether it be a couple extra dollars or a piece of mind. You never know how much you could be helping someone.
11. Change is the only thing consistent in life. Do not allow that bother you. Embrace chance and move with life, whichever direction it chooses to take you.
12. Smile often. Smile at strangers. Smile at your friends. Smile when nobody is looking and you’re alone in your bedroom. Smile when somebody is rambling to you.
13. Body image means nothing. Your body is merely just a seatbelt in the car. Your body is here to protect you. You choose the direction you go, and your body will not hold you back. Only you can hold yourself back.
14. Don’t hold grudges. Don’t allow yourself to hate anybody. Forgive them. Learn to love them for the person you never got to see them to be. Believe that a beautiful human exists in that person. Wish them well.
15. Drink orange juice. Lots of it.
16. Don’t allow the opinions of others to choose your destiny. We are all simply trying to live our own life.
17. Sing all the time. Sing off key. Sing in a silly voice. Sing like you’re on stage. Sing no matter who is around. Singing is breathing for the soul. Sing.
18. Take time to think. Write your feelings down. Write letters to the people you love. Texting is overrated and not as heartfelt as a nice handwritten letter.
19. Live for yourself. Breathe for yourself. Do everything in your life for nobody but you. This is your life. This is it."
"One day, he’s going to know. He’ll know your birthday, your middle name, where you were born, your star sign, and your parents names. He’ll know how old you were when you learnt to ride a bike, how your grandparents passed away, how many pets you had, and how much you hated going to school. He’ll know your eye colour, your scars, your freckles, your laugh lines and your birth marks. He’ll know your favourite book, movie, candy, food, pair of shoes, colour, and song. He’s going to know why you’re awake at 5am most nights, where you were when you realised you’d lost a good friend, why you picked up the razor and how you managed to put it down before things went too far. He’s going to know your phobias, your dreams, your fears, your wishes, and your worries. He’s going to know about your first heartbreak, your dream wedding, and your problems with your parents. He’ll know your strengths, weaknesses, laziness, energy, and your mixed emotions. He’s going to know about your love for mayonnaise, your dream of being famous when you were five, your need to quote any film you know all the way through, and your fear of growing older. He’ll know your bad habits, your mannerisms, your stroppy pout, your facial expressions, and your laugh like it’s his favourite song. The way you chew, drink, walk, sleep, fidget and kiss. He’s going to know that you’ve already picked out wedding flowers, baby names, tiles for the bathroom, bridesmaid dresses, and the colour of your bedroom walls. He’s going to know, get annoyed at and then accept that you leave clothes everywhere, take twenty minutes to order a Starbucks, have to organise your DVD’s alphabetically, and check your horoscope… just incase. He’ll know your McDonald’s order, how many sugars to put in your tea, how many scoops of ice cream you want, and that you need your sandwiches cut into triangles. He’s going to know how you feel without you telling him, that you need a wee from a look on your face, and that you’re crying without shedding tears. He’s going to know all of it. Everything. You, from top to bottom and inside out. From learning, from sharing, from listening, from watching. He’s going to know every single thing there is to know, and you know what else? He is still going to love you."