Eighteen Things I learned at 18

A week and one day ago, I turned nineteen. I left behind the "I'm an adult now" age of eighteen without a bit of remorse. Don't get me wrong, I loved 18; adventures, friendships, love, achievements, but also hardships and lessons. Just when you think you're finally an adult, there is much to learn.


1.  I was not ready to be an adult. (I'm still not). Ugh, working, college, cooking, cleaning, laundry, etc. With freedom comes much responsibility.

2.  Whether you think you can make your own decisions or not, you still need your parents. Their wisdom, guidance, and even rules start to make sense at eighteen.

3.  Stop wishing away high school. It was fun and easy. Teachers actually cared and offered solid advice. Plus, when will you have the opportunity to spend that much time with your friends? Spoiler alert: probably never

4.  College is expensive. I applied for scholarships like crazy! Who doesn't like free money?

5.  It's okay to be disappointed. Let downs build character and thicken skin.

6.  And don't worry about disappointing anyone but yourself. Your future is yours. Make the decision that is right for you.

7.  Contrary to what people say, you do not "have to go to your senior prom". I spent the majority of my year in a gown as the fair queen. So when it came to prom, I was over it.

8.  Committing to a college without ever being there, especially when it's 1,000+ miles away, is stressful. Colleges provide visits and tours for a reason.

9.  It's true what they say about after graduation. People you thought were better friends become distant, but such is life. And let's be honest, some classmates you'll be glad to never have to see again.

10.  The days between graduation and fall semester fly by too fast, but they're some of the best days and nights I can remember.

11.  Unfortunately, at eighteen I learned to grieve. My whole town did with the loss of two beautiful people; Liv and Mrs. Svonavec.

12.  However, I learned to appreciate life and how fragile it truly is.

13.  I found that it is scary, but okay to leave my hometown (and state). To quote the only Shakespeare I know, "there is a world elsewhere".

14.  Good friends will still be good friends no matter the distance.

15.  As soon as you leave, you'll need your mom more than ever. At 19 I'm still not sure how to do my own laundry or cook anything better than chicken (from a can) tacos.

16.  The first semester of freshman year is lonely. Friends like the ones you had in high school are hard to come by. Many friends come and go in the first semester, but that definitely is not a bad thing.

17.  Attending four concerts in a year, camping on the beach, and moving across the country taught me that there is no better time to make a change and truly live than when you are eighteen.

18.  I learned to love myself for who and what I am. That one thing is oh so important, friends.

I am still learning, every single day. But eighteen taught me more in 365 days than any other year in my life. Now, with a little pinch of adulthood under my belt, bring on nineteen!

Julia HayComment