Dear Freshman Me...

Dear Freshman Julianna, 

First off, you need to calm down. You’re way too stressed for a 14 year old. It’s not healthy. You’ll discover this through some excruciating doctors visits that all end in tears. If you’re wondering whether or not it gets easier, it doesn’t. You’ll gain control of your anxiety through lots of growing up, but you won’t stop crying when people ask you to talk about your feelings. You put way too much pressure on yourself. I’ll break it to you now. You are not going to Northwestern. Not because you didn’t get in. You won’t even apply because 60,000 a year is way too much for you, and the idea of snow freaks you out. You won’t even go to your second school. For the next three years, you will plan out your entire life from where you’re going to school to where you’re living to what you’re studying. Everything will change the summer before your senior year. It’s a hard decision, but you made the right one. I won’t tell you where you end up, but trust me. You’re going to be really happy. Just trust in God's plan for you. 

Second off, thank your Mom. For the next four years, this woman will go to Hell and back just to make sure you are okay. She makes sure you have wonderful teachers, and she fights for high school to be an enjoyable experience. Especially in the upcoming year, she will deal with all your panic attacks while also dealing with her own students and health. There are days you will resent her because you think she doesn’t know what she’s talking about. Again, trust me, about 99.99% of the time, she is right. Just listen to her. 

In this upcoming year, you are going to meet amazing people. You don’t know it, but you are going to become best friends with Jordan. Even after she graduates this year, she will continue to be one of your best friends. You will connect because you both have slight obsessions with sports. The two of you will constantly text through the next four years about football and basketball. She’s going to become one of your favorite people. In this next year, you are going to become friends with lots of seniors. You will cry at graduation, and you will wonder how you will survive without them. They’re amazing people who protected you as a baby freshman. But don’t worry. You remain friends with Natalie and Tori for the next four years too. You and Tori will never fight, and even when you don’t see each other, you will pick up right where you left off. The two of you will go through adventures together that you didn’t even think were possible. You and Natalie will have fights. One that might even end your friendship, but the two of you realize what’s important in life: having each other as best friends. She always has your back, and you always have hers. Over the next four years, you will have the most amazing friends from ones you became friends with way back when in elementary school like Julie, Alex, and Marina to ones you were friends with in middle school like Katie, Natalie, and Tori to ones you found in high school like Christina, Marguerite, Grace, and Jackson. There are even more people who are incredibly special to you, but it would be hard to name them all. 

You know how you kind of want to quit football right now because all the senior guys scare you? Don’t. Keep going to practice. Put up with the guy who somehow finds way to argue with you about everything. Deal with the kickers who say stuff that you never want to hear. Not this senior class, but the next one will become some of your favorite people. Then the next one will start to feel like family, and finally, your senior class is filled some of the greatest people you have ever met. They’ll become your brothers, and you will never feel anything like standing under those stadium lights on Fridays again. You will deal with lots of blood, sweat, and tears over the next four years. Literally. Cherish every moment because I miss it already. 

Speaking of boys… You’re little boy crazy at 14. You are going to discover what it’s like to have a crush on a guy for almost three years... Oh well. Over the next four years, you will realize that boys are not worth it sometimes. You will learn that finding what you love doing is so much more fun than any guy you will meet. You’re only 14. You will meet lots of guys over the next four years, and you will learn what you like and don’t like. One day a guy, your friend no less, will tell you that you are intimidating. For about five hours, you will analyze this comment and then realize that if a guy finds you intimidating and is scared, he’s not worth it. So what? You have a really big personality with strong opinions. Tough if a guy can’t handle that and bless the guy you will find in the future who can. Don't change who you are for some boy. 

Enough about boys. Let’s talk about what is really important - school. Math will continue to be hard for you this year, but it gets better. You will have amazing teachers sophomore and junior year that become like surrogate parents, and then senior year math will be super easy. Just wait. Surprisingly, you’re going to hate English this year, but you will meet one of your best friends through this class. She will be the one to pick you up when you’ve beaten yourself up, and she is absolutely one of the most understanding and kind people who deals with your bullshit. You don’t give her enough credit. English gets better though. Your next three years will be again filled with teachers who either become like your Mom or are your Mom. Spoiler! In biology this year you will make a promise to your teacher that you will take AP Biology as a senior. You keep your promise, but science doesn’t get easier for you. You end up liking it a lot more as subject except physics. You will hate that class, but again you will suffer through it with some amazing people. Chemistry will become one of your favorite classes that you take. While you’re taking, you will hate almost every minute of it, but looking back on it, you will love it and your teacher. There’s one regret you will have, and it’s not taking a class your junior year. It’s a really hard decision you have to make, and you make it for your health. Who knows what it would have been like if you had taken it. You have a really good junior year still, and you make up for not taking that class junior year by taking a class your senior year. I have no idea if that makes sense… Oh well. Ooh, one more class to talk about. You will never love a class like you love AP World History. Some of your very best friends are in this class, and your teacher will become one of your favorites. You end up taking European History because of World, and again, you love this class more than anything. Not so much because of the people in that class, but because you love Euro and this teacher. These two classes will teach you more than almost any other class. It’s amazing. 

One day you're going to attend your last high school basketball game and as the clock winds down, you will begin to cry. Not just because y'all lost, but because it's over. You will spend four years cheering on the Chiefs, not just in basketball or football but in everything. There will be so many times that you lose your voice from yelling so loud during football and basketball games. Sitting at baseball games will become one of your favorite past times in the spring. Road trips to see games will become some of your favorite memories. In your first year, you will laugh at the phrase, "Once a Chief, always a Chief," but by senior year, you will understand. I won't spoil the greatness of the next four years, but you will witness history over and over again. I truly did love high school. 

There’s one last thing I want to talk about, and it’s this blog. You haven’t even created this blog yet. You will try to make one during first semester and realize you have no clue what you are doing. You will try again in May, and you will still have no clue what you are doing. The next three years will be filled with forgetting to schedule a post, having great ideas but no execution, and meeting great people on the internet. Your blog may not be world famous or anything, but it is yours. You will be incredibly proud of this space you’ve created just for yourself even when you only get 10 page views on a certain day. This blog will become your baby and a place for you to create and write. It’s hard to see it now, but people will read your blog. You just need to keep working on it. Also, one day you will learn that doing high school and trying to blog every single day is nearly impossible for you. 

I hope you are proud of the person you become. You will go through Hell in the upcoming years, but you will also come out incredibly strong. Just wait. The fun hasn’t even started. 

Love, I-Just-Finished-High-School Julianna

xx, jKm

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