To my Eighteen Year Old Self, A Ten Year Challenge

Saturday, 23 November 2019


I saw lots of people do a ten year challenge back of the start of the year, looking back on how much they had changed in ten years. 
The year would 2009, I would have been .... EIGHTEEN!! (I'm getting old... ) 

This is me....

Yeah, before the art of selfies were invented, before the time that front cameras were invented on mobile phones, we took mirror shots! I went through a very heavy eyeliner period...

At Eighteen, I had no clue about the world, how it worked or what life itself had to offer. I had no clue about who I was or what I wanted out of life. I had no idea about anything. Life was very different back then. I wasn't allowed to do certain things, even as an new legal adult, I still was very much influenced by many people about how I should live my life. I was brought up very religious, and had many, many religious beliefs that I was taught were the only way to get you through life, not following these rules would lead you into the fires of hell. Being brainwashed by religion, being scared of not being religious, following the rules and frightened to break them, was shit. I genuinely was terrified of breaking a rule or not following the path, I was suppose to be on. Many, many Christians would tell me, God loves you...without knowing anything about me or my story. They didn't understand that I didn't have a choice and that we were given no other option. To not go down this route meant failure and hell. And when you're brainwashed into it, this is all you know. 


I can look back at the photo and think, who is she? I don't recognise her. Having to leave religion and faith, killed me at first. I was fearful, scared, this was it, I was disobeying. I was breaking all of the rules, I was doomed, hell was were I was heading. It took time, a lot of time to see that everything I knew, everything I was taught was a lie. Everything I believed, everything I was promised was a lie, just another thing to keep you there, another way of keeping control, another way to keep you sucked in. I can look back at the whole time and think, wow.... I knew nothing. I made new relationships with people who taught me so much, I learnt new things and figured out who I wanted to be in the world. It's hard leaving all you've ever known behind, having to start again and not knowing where you'll end up or who you can trust. 

Life in between these ten years was tough and I learnt a lot along the way. 

But here we are ten year later...

 


Hello to Twenty Eight. 

If I have learnt anything in the last ten years, it is this. 

- Never doubt your strength. When you think you aren't strong, you'll surprise yourself. 

-Not everyone will look out for you and that's okay. You'll learn who you can trust and whom you can't. You can't be friends with everyone and you can't fix relationships that won't work. 

- It takes time to find out who you are and what you need to do. The path to finding yourself can be tricky but it takes time. Listen to your own voice and think about what you want rather than what other people want for you. Only you can make these choices. 

- Learning how to let go of things that just aren't worth anything. People that hurt you in the past or comments that were said about you. They just aren't worth holding onto and are stopping you from your journey. Leave them in the past where they belong. You do you. 

- Learn from your past. Every experience is a lesson and use this to help you learn from your mistakes. Everyone makes mistakes, it's how we deal with them once they've been made. Always use these mistakes as a learning opportunity. 

Here's to the next ten years!  

X O X O 

Kayleigh 


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