June 21, 2013

reflections (and not the mulan kind)

I've been feeling very inspired lately to reflect on the past couple of years and the inevitable growth that has taken place. I've been packing, preparing for the big move (...across campus), and have discovered some old journals. As I've cracked them open, my heart has broken over the words scribbled across the pages. There's a lot of sadness in there, a lot of confusion, but a glimmer of hope. I wish that I could go back to 2006 and give recent Vista HS grad Jess some wisdom and a sneak peek into her future. If I could go and do so, this is what I would say:
Oh Jess. First of all, please stop cutting the necks out of your shirts. I know that you saw a picture of Mary Kate and Ashley wearing shirts like that, but please cease and desist immediately. You should probably also stop pulling your hair back and bumping it up to create that pouf you love so much. You'll have a good laugh at yourself in the coming years.

Don't forget your flat iron when you go to Paris otherwise you will wear a pony tail EVERY DAY. 
Don't be embarrassed that you're staying in Oceanside and going to Mira Costa. You are making a smart financial decision that will put you in a much better place in the years to come. You are a smart cookie, never doubt that. You will meet some great people at Mira Costa. You will meet a boy. He will value you. He will listen to you. You will fall... hard. He will get back together with his ex-girlfriend. You will befriend her and  you will be in their wedding. It will make for a great story and you will be okay with how everything unfolds. 

You will end up moving to Idaho. I know that it's random and I know that it doesn't make sense, just trust me on this one. You will fall in love with that state and you will make some incredible friendships there. You will blossom. Your humor will attract people but make sure you are careful of using it to edify people. You will end up studying Criminal Justice and you will be really successful in your studies. I know that you wanted to end up in Broadcast Journalism, but this path is much better. 

Happy 23rd Birthday to you!
Don't fear what comes after college, because let me tell you babygirl, it is wonderful. You will move to a foreign country, explore new places, pay off some loans, and make some of the truest friendships you've ever known. In that country you will finally make peace with your body. You will learn to enjoy exercising and you will start fueling your body with whole foods. Through that process, you will learn so much about yourself. You will still have slip ups, but you will not spend time or energy crying over yourself like you have. 

These are the Ferguson's and they will become some of your best pals.
When you say goodbye to South Korea, you'll end up back in Idaho and you will start to work for the institution that shaped you so much. You will get a big girl job and be surrounded by people who love you, respect you, and genuinely enjoy you. Your life will not look anything like the speech you gave in Senior Exhibition at Vista High School in 2006, but it will be so much better. Trust me. 
2013 Jess

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