Then vs. Now

The first of this month marked six years since my high school graduation. I'm always a little shocked when this time of year rolls around, because it always seems to arrive faster and faster. On one hand, it completely seems like it has been six years since I reached life's first major rite of passage. (Besides getting a driver's license of course.) On the other hand, I still remember sitting in all of my high school classes like it was yesterday. Some days, I feel like I don't even remember my high school self. Other days, I feel like I haven't changed at all.

The truth is, there is A LOT of difference in the age of 18 and the age of 24. I think about my high school self often. You know how in A Christmas Carol the ghosts take Scrooge to examine his past, present, and future actions and in every scene he is kind of just standing around watching himself? That's how I feel when I think about 18-year-old me. In my imagination, I'm standing in the corner of my Senior English class, watching my younger self sitting in the corner, quietly taking notes. I watch myself observing everything around me, but saying nothing unless it's to one of my best friends sitting around me. When I think about that past version of myself, it seems both completely accurate to how I am now, yet also completely different.

That's why I have decided to make a list...a list of things that have changed or stayed the same from then to now. How much have I really changed over the past six years?

//Then, I was an introvert...and I was pretty ashamed of it. I thought that being an introvert was a sign of weakness, and I was scared to death of people. I was scared to branch out and try anything out of my comfort zone. Now, I am still an introvert, but I've realized that it is actually a positive aspect of myself. I may be kind of quiet, but I have learned how to talk to people and voice my opinion. I have learned that being observant is a great thing. I have learned that there is nothing wrong with knowing when to be quiet, opposed to when to stand up for what you believe in.

//Then, I had dreams for the future, but I believed they were unattainable. Now, I still have dreams, and I know that they will come true as long as I have the drive to work towards them.

//Then, I didn't love myself like I should. I was self-conscious to the point that I could hardly make eye contact with people that I wasn't completely comfortable around. I didn't understand that there is no "one" type of beauty. I just assumed that because I didn't look like the pretty girls in school, I wasn't pretty at all. Now, I am in the process of learning to love myself for "me." Instead of wishing for looks that I don't have, I am embracing what I was given. And it gets easier every day.

//Then, I was better at keeping up with eyebrow maintenance. Now, I get to when I can if and when I feel like it. Sorry...I'm not sorry about that.

//Then, I didn't appreciate the fact that I had so much free time to do simple things that I enjoy. Now, I know that the simple things in life are important, because the free time isn't always there to indulge in them.

//Then, I was sheltered from living in a teeny tiny town for my entire life. I didn't understand how many different people and places and things there are in the world, nor had I even taken much time to ponder the fact. Now, I haven't experienced as many places as I would like to, but I have been out on my own enough to know that there is so much to life. And it isn't all perfect, but it is diverse which still makes it beautiful.

//Then, I would have never had the courage to write all of my thoughts and post them publicly for anyone and everyone to read. Now, I believe it is not only important, but necessary to clear my head through creativity here on this little space. There are a lot of different ways to be brave.

How have you changed over the years?
The Rachael Way said...

I'm thinking this is a good idea for a linkup my dear!!

Kelli @She Crab Soup said...

I have a HS then and now post on my idea list, great idea to do it around HS graduation time. As of today I've been gone from HS for 19 years. OMG really!?!

Meg said...

Oh my gosh. I'm a totally different person now. Main thing is now I love Jesus! I'm more comfortable in my own skin now. It's funny how getting older can make you more mature ;)

Rach @ This Italian Family said...

This makes me feel old, ha! Six years ago I was graduating college! ;) But I know what you mean about how much you've changed over the past 6 years. I have too!

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