Quoting the lovely Adele: “Hello, it’s me.” It’s me but just another year older. I turned 23 years old on the 18th of February this year and I had one of the loveliest birthdays with some of the best people in my life. It also made me think of all of the things I have learnt and discovered throughout the years. So here we go. Here are 23 things I have learnt throughout the 23 years I have lived.
1. A couple of real friends are worth more than hundreds of real friends. Throughout high school it felt so important to have a big friend group. Although the friendships weren’t that deep or meaningful, they felt like they were the real thing. But after high school is over, most of those friends go their own way and you never really talk to them again. It’s the real friends that count. That are there for you through the good and the bad times. Dear Maris, Debby and Kaisa, thank you for being the bestest friends in the entire world. I will always love and appreciate you.
2. You will find someone that loves you just as much as you love them. I used to think that there was nobody out there for me. I thought I might stay single forever because what are the actual chances of me meeting the one I love when the world is so big? Well, it will happen. It will beat all of the odds and it will happen at its own time. Trust me.
3. Pizza is always a good idea. Hungover? Pizza. Stressed? Pizza. Sad? Pizza. Happy? Pizza. It’s the answer to any mood.
4. Your dreams don’t have to stay your dreams. Figure out what your dreams are and don’t let anything stand in your way. It might be hard and nearly impossible sometimes, but push through. Because at the end of the day, it will be worth all of your struggles.
5. Moments with your loved ones are precious. I moved to the UK over three years ago and I appreciate my parents, friends and family back in Estonia SO MUCH and I wish I could tell the entire universe to appreciate your loved ones as much as you can when you’re with them. Make time for them. Be interested in what they are doing and how they’re feeling. Because when you’re miles and miles away with no easy way of getting to them, you will miss it. So much.
6. Donald Trump is a prick. I didn’t need 23 years to work that out but I thought it would be an important thing to point out. Feel free to do your own research about the atrocities this man has said and done but I can fully confirm he is an awful person.
7. Always get a Hetty/Henry hoover. The other ones are crap. Trust me, I have learnt this lesson the hard way – my bank account got severely hurt.
8. Having arguments with your partner sometimes is okay. Just because you had an argument, doesn’t mean you’re going to break up and that all is lost in the world. No. If you’re both willing to work through it, it will be okay.
9. Living with a boy is weird. Yup, it’s just strange. Although it’s nice to watch movies, eat pizza, drink hot chocolates and cuddle, there are things to consider when living with a guy. Boys can often be lazy and completely addicted to computer games. But it’s okay. Just try to guide them in the right direction.
10. The Greatest Showman is the greatest film of all time. I don’t even know what else to say. Just go see it!
11. Don’t care what others think. Other people don’t like the same music as you? Fine. They think the films and shows you watch are silly? Okay. Because it just doesn’t matter what they think. You do you, because at the end of the day, it’s you who’s listening to that music and watching those films, not them. And if these things make you happy, keep on loving them.
12. High School Musical will always cheer you up. If you’ve ever watched High School Musical when you were a kid, watch it again now when you’re feeling sad or unmotivated. It honestly is the cure to sadness sometimes. It might be cringey, but I can guarantee you won’t be sad when you’re watching it.
13. It’s okay to kiss on the first date. I know different people have different views on this, but I think if you feel like you want to do it, then go for it! After all, it’s all about how you feel.
14. You can have a magical first kiss. Although there’s nothing wrong with kissing someone in the club or elsewhere for the first time, I would just like to say that there can be magical first kisses. Yes, it’s mainly the person that can make it magical, but my first kiss was the cutest. It was with my current boyfriend Kieran at the end of our first date. He asked me if it was okay to kiss me, and when I said yes, he took me to our favourite park, said the sweetest things and then he kissed me under the starry sky. Magical.
15. You will have to work with people you don’t like. Yup, it’s just life. You will most definitely have to work with people that annoy you so much you could scream but that’s life and there’s nothing you can do about it. So practice some patience, because you’re going to need it.
16. Hot chocolate is not the same without whipped cream. This was my recent discovery. I always thought hot chocolate was overall amazing but now that I’ve had it with whipped cream, I am never going back. Get yourself some £1.10 Tesco whipped cream and your hot chocolate life will be changed.
17. Trying a vegetarian diet is always a good idea. I turned vegetarian nearly 3 years ago and it was the best decision in my life. I haven’t had a single meat product since then. I feel so much happier and more aware of the benefits of vegetarian and vegan diets. Try to go vegetarian or vegan for a week, it might just change your life! (but check that the meals you consume are nutritious!)
18. All races are beautiful. Having grown up in an environment that has a majority of white people, I didn’t really think of any other races and cultures in the world. Moving to England has opened my (and my family’s and friends’) eyes and heart to so many people. Everyone is beautiful and unique, no matter their skin colour and culture.
19. Travelling is the most fulfilling thing that money can buy. Explore the world. Experience different cultures and lifestyles. See how people are living across the globe. It will change you for the better.
20. Instagram is not reality. It’s so easy to look at someone’s feed and think that their life is perfect. No, it’s not. Nobody’s is. Instagram’s simply a collection of a person’s best moments, not a collection of the good and the bad. Just remember that.
21. You will not love all of the jobs you will do. I have had an absolute nightmare of a job experience involving a lying-boss, avoiding payments, contacting a dodgy American company and many more ridiculous things. But it will be okay in the end. Trust me.
22. Hard work will pay off. Life can get you down and really test you, but in the end, all of your hard work is going to be worth it. The sleepless nights and cries of desperation will all be worth it.
23. You can get through anything. Anything life throws your way, you can get through it all.
Be kind, be humble.