❝ London is satisfied, Paris is resigned, but New York is always hopeful. Always it believes that something good is about to come off, and it must hurry to meet it. ❞
D o r o t h y P a r k e r
To everyone who stayed in their comfort zone for a long time. It is time to get out of your tiny bubble and pop it. The process of change will be unpleasant and terrifying. But you will thank yourself for that in the future.
￼Where did we first begin?
The vivid memory I replayed mentally in my mind brought me back four years ago. It all started in my fourth year. Spring season was warmly embraced. Throughout high school I always had my nose buried in a book not for academic purpose but my obsession with fiction novels. I consumed my teenage years by existing in my head not caring about the external world. Usually March was the period of time when senior students keep talking about prom. I almost fell asleep listening to my best friend - Emily Clark.
"Did I miss anything?" I yawned, putting a hand over my mouth.
"You weren't listening again. I told you stop being such a weirdo and get yourself a prom date." Emily lectures me for the 5th time today.
"I'm independent, remember?" I argued. "Besides, I have you."
"You know that I'm going with someone." Emily mentioned.
I honestly didn't mind that she is going to prom with her long term boyfriend. School events weren't really my thing. Just the thought of attending it gives me anxiety. I would rather spend my day at home alone. Anyways I was too busy preparing for reviewing my entrance exam to college.
I had couple of options to transfer to any university near our town. But again, that was my lame excuse for skipping fun moments teenagers will only experience once in a lifetime. Sometimes I think I'm stuck somewhere far away from here. I could be a old lady in a young body. Or perhaps I could be strange foreign alien living in this dull place.
"Hello? Are you even there?" She waved her hand over my face.
"Ah yes, what were you saying again?" I returned from my non existing universe.
"I said why don't you finally say yes to Tanner. He liked you since 8th grade." She repeated.
"I don't really know, Em."
"Come on, give the boy a chance."
"Hey guys! I brought you some tacos and smelly cheese." Tanner Black proudly showed us his tray of food.
"What is wrong with you Tanner?" Emily looked at him with disgust.
"That's what I'm trying to say."
"Now I understand" Emily sneered at his bad taste
"Are you guys talking about me. I'm flattered." He has a smug look on his face.
"Sit down before I'll change my mind about being friends with you." She threatens.
"Ouch that hurts. So are you going guys to prom?" He looked directly into my soul or maybe I was overreacting. I awkwardly shifted in my seat.
Three years of being friends in this school wasn't any exciting rollercoaster ride. But it definitely was the same every single day. Entering the school halls being invisible to the rest. At least that's how I felt the entire time. It was always difficult to keep up with everyone's energy. I'm an empty battery and my charger never works.
"Will you be my prom date?" Tanner nervously slips the paper under my desk.
Don't get me wrong I'm not gloomy and emo full of angst but I think forcing myself fitting in this small group requires so much effort. I'm thankful to have them as my trusted friends but I first have to figure out my own puzzle. I'll start by setting foot in the long maze of the unknown.
I'm surrounded by optimistic people in my circle but when I'm alone I don't think I'm that bright like everyone else thinks.
"Yes" I wrote back
Do I belong here at all?
This is how it began.
I grabbed the pen beside my night stand and turned the lamp on. It lightens up the room and I could see the darkness outside my window bedroom. My glow in the dark stickers at the ceiling reminded me of my junior year entering high school for the first time. I rewind the picture of my younger self. The elementary graduation photo of me barely smiling in the camera looking non photogenic with medals around my neck.
The small achievement was not worth it. Well it did make my family proud but counting the years and graduating now from this batch made no difference. I was still not fully smiling. I was in the same old place and I was the same old me.
This is it!
To my Higher Self: a Letter & a Promise.
Dear Higher Self,
I see you came to a point in your life when you finally decided to follow your gut. We have been together for almost 18 years. Only 183 Days left before you come out of your hiding place. I've been waiting to see you turn out in the woman I always wanted you to be.
I have waited long enough for you to become an adult. I honestly wasted many opportunities to improve myself and become more comfortable with my life. As a teenager I had many insecurities. I hated my body, my face and everything about me. Those insecurities became my greatest enemy. I was fighting against myself, I was my own demon.
I never bother to say anything anymore. I can't even explain it to myself. They will only think I'm over reacting and seeking for attention. Years of searching for validation I'm sick of it. I'm tried. I really hope and pray one day you'll stop obsessing about perfection. You'll get there. Slowly you're learning. Don't let it consume you. Don't fall into the trap. I wasted my whole teenage years. Don't lose your whole life to things that are not important.
Open your heart and it will lead you to your place where you truly belong.
I know you'll find it soon enough
If you think the battle ends here you are wrong because you will face many good and bad experiences including challenging tasks but I know you. I know you can handle it. I never believed in my capability. I tried I really did. It always sounds easy to be confident and go after your heart. I have high hopes but my shyness made me the quitter I am today.
But today as I'm writing this letter I want to turn my back of the last chapter and write the new beginning of my book. I promise that today my journey begins. It won't be easy but I will make it.
I'm claiming it!
Hoping to talk to you soon
Xoxo, Present Dahlia Version