Dear 12th Grade Kelly,

Get off your ass and do something. No really, get up now. Find a passion and run with it because the rest of this letter aka your future, is not pretty for awhile. Don't say I didn't warn you. 

Don't start dating the cute guy at work. It's gonna be a chaotic two years and you'll learn a lot but it will do more damage than if you just live your life for you and focus on love later on. 

Apply to more colleges and be genuine about it. Don't take the easy way out and "just work", it will give you too much freedom in an already wild existence and you'll make a lot of bad choices for the next decade. And if you don't want to go to a "real" college, find a trade you love. You're really gonna wish you took your friends advice when she said "just go to beauty school with me". And if you ignore that, you're gonna end up taking a course for something you don't care about and just to get people off your back about school. You'll get a job in that industry for a year before realizing how much you hate it and you'll still be paying a school loan every month when you're in your thirties. And trust me, you're gonna complain about it every.single.month. And then eventually desk job after desk job, you'll settle into one you're happy at. But you won't be fully happy because you'll have no room for growth, you'll be banking typical corporate America priced paychecks, and you'll have zero room for creativity. And your wild mind needs it! Although someday you'll start a blog and get your creative juices flowing.

About a year after graduation, you will have a baby sister. So again, you need to get off your ass and do something so that you can be an inspiration to her. It will be a bit hypocritical of you to tell her to make the right choices when it comes to school and passions and desires for her future when you don't do any of that yourself. You can tell her to learn from your mistakes, but you'd both be better off with her learning from your successes. 

Put down those stupid diet pills that you bought from a cart in the mall and focus on health and nutrition starting NOW. Believe me, you're gonna have plenty of weight issues, so you should really get a hold of it now. 

People will love you. 
People will hurt you. 
A broken heart is not the end of the world. 
You will fail a lot but it will not define you. 
There will be a person or two that will really have your back in your darkest times. Try not to fuck that up later...
You will be betrayed and there will also be some people that you betray and hurt. 
These people around you today will not be around forever, so focus more on yourself.
You will fall in love.
Someone is gonna make you really happy one day. 
You will choose all the wrongs guys and at all the wrong times. 
You will break down. 
Sometimes you're gonna wish you were dead. 

But you can't die because you have a light at the end of all this. And you'll have a baby sister that will adore you and you two will spend every moment together. You will be the first one to hold her when she's born, you'll spend your days with her while your mom works and you will work at night and come home to excited hugs from her tiny little beautiful self. She will love you. And she will need you. 

And most importantly, stop being so angry. Don't keep sweating the small stuff because it will be the hardest habit for you to break and you will need to break it at the most important time of your life... when Robert loves you. Yes, the one from Pop Warner. The one you dated so briefly at 13 years old. The one whose photo you carried in your back pocket, and whose name you covered notebooks with. That one. He will be back and he will love you. 

12th grade Kelly, you're gonna be happy regardless if you take all this advice. In fact, don't take any of it, just run the path you choose because it's the one that's gonna lead you back to that Robert. And through all your mistakes and darkness, your sister is still gonna love you and admire you and look up to you and want to be with you all the time. 


PS - try to never have orange hair again, especially when the background of your senior picture is orange. Idiot.


  1. I swear I had a nearly identical 12th grade pic, complete with sun-in dyed orange hair, orange background AND an orange sweater. Oh Lordy!! More teenagers need to read this letter, I found it really inspiring!

  2. I love this!

    PS - I went through a red-orange hair phase. Never again for me.

  3. haha please find that pic and show me!
    thank you <3

  4. thank you!
    haha i feel like many of us have, trying to go blonde and having it not work out lol

  5. There are so many lessons I wish I could tell my 12th grade self! The crazy thing about being 18 (or 17) is you feel like you are such a grown up...but you look back later and realize just how young and naive you really were.

  6. I'll have to check the "archives" hahaha no fb when I was in HS-- My mom has to have it somewhere! ;)

  7. yes!! i was just telling my 13 yr old sister that the other day. because she was like "i don't wanna be old, i just wanna be 18" and i was like no you don't, trust me you are still a baby at 18 and you will know nothing and think you know everything. honestly, even when i look back at my mid 20s, like 25 26 - i'm like wow i still didn't know much. i guess that happens thru all phases of getting older and wiser haha.

  8. me either, no social media at all. the internet was brand new, cameras still had film and cell phones were just becoming a thing but most of us still had pagers haha. growing up watching Back to the Future you would think that the class of 2000 had flying cars and fancy technology lol. but nope, hadn't happened yet. it's actually crazy to think about kids now, like the class of 2015 and what they have access too .... THE WHOLE WORLD. i remember we would all use a payphone to page each other and stand by the payphone waiting for it to ring back LOL omg this needs to just be a post haha.

  9. OMG let's get together a do a group post, what life as a teenager without technology was like! Dial up internet, "You've got mail," those fancy pagers where you read an operator a message and they typed it out and sent it to someone's pager, having one cell phone between your 6 friends, calling your friend's house phone and talking to their mom first!!!

  10. haahaha and when cordless phones and call waiting started and when CALLER ID came out and it was the biggest deal! and *69 ! or having someone pick up the phone in another room and start dialing and you're like "I'M ON THE PHONE!!!"

  11. OMG and begging your parents to get you your own line, and then realizing you had to use it to go on AIM and still using their line to talk on 3-WAY!!! So embarrassing, I used to record the answering machine messages with my fave song, like Garbage or Bush or No Doubt! haha

  12. I feel like most people are idiots at 18. I was so dumb.

  13. teens are the years to make mistakes and learn from them. looking back, i know i made a lot of mistakes, did a lot of dumb shit but i'm a better person for them as well. the most hilarious thing is that back then, you think you knew everything and when i think back to my behaviour/state of mind, i think I KNEW JACK SHIT!! haha!

    Vodka and Soda

  14. Dance With A DollyAugust 12, 2014 at 7:51 AM

    I wish we could have all done something like the movie "13 Going On 30" and go to the future for a little bit and then take what we learned and applied it in our teens..Great post!

  15. Saw this today and I thought of this post!!

  16. If only we could tell the future. Life would be SO easy!!

  17. oh for sure! and not a single 18 year old thinks they're dumb. its like "I'M AN ADULT NOW. I KNOW EVERYTHING."

  18. seriously!! i swear i had all the answers. i even got engaged as if i totally had my whole life planned out and i just KNEW he was the one bahahahhaha. nope. so wrong. oh so wrong haha

  19. thanks!!
    but then that just makes me think of the movie The Butterfly Effect and all the things you would screw up by changing the future. eek!

  20. but would it be easy?? what if knowing actually makes everything harder and worse?! ahh!

  21. I know I'm a little late to the party but I just have to say I that this conversation makes me wish I was a teenager in the US in the 90's. I mean that all sounds awesome - pagers, pay phones and whatnot. As weird as this may sound coming form a fresh, newbie blogger, but I really hate technology and social media and what it is doing to us and especially the teenagers today. In our personal lives I mean - for blogging it's the greatest thing since sliced bread !