If I Had a Time Machine…

I spend a lot of my time with kids. I teach them some piano playin’ skills but also I get to listen to them. They tell me about school and their new markers and the funny thing the kid in their class said or the really mean kid that sits across from them at lunch. Every once in a while I get the chance to give a little advice or share a thought or two. Mostly they’re just shocked that I somehow functioned without the internet before I was 10 (this face—> O_O), but It’s always good to feel like I gave a little something practical back to these sweet kids I spend my afternoons with.

I was remembering my own, nervous high school self this week when I was talking to a student and in honor of back-to-school week (which everyone seems to be doing at the moment) I compiled a little list.

Enjoy, whether you’re 15, 35, or whatever.

21 Things I would say to 15-year old Faith:

  1. First of all, calm down. Ok but for real.
  2. A lot of people are going to make fun of you for your height and some of the things you like. You know what? They’re absolutely wrong. Hang in there till college and you’ll find plenty of people just like you.
  3. You actually have pretty good intuition. Trust it more.
  4. DON’T throw out those pink pants!! I know everyone thinks they’re dumb but they’re wrong and those pants are awesome. You WILL regret it. Trust me, I know.
  5. You can’t wear clothes from Forever 21. You just can’t. It’s not your fault but you’re taller than most of the dudes in your school and built like mad men’s Joan. (You don’t know who she is yet but trust me you’re going to LOVE her.) Just buy your jeans in the grownup section and STOP IT with the tiny t-shirts. One day you’ll discover Gap and all will be right with the world. #curvyfitjeansforlife
  6. He’s not the one. You’re going to feel like he should be and you’re going to be really confused about it for a really long time but he’s not. Cut your loses and move on.
  7. Sunscreen it up, Snow White. Sun. Screen. Your super pale skin is AWESOME and don’t let anybody tell you otherwise.  Also, you’re never going to get a good tan unless you sit outside for hours and even then you’ll just end up an uneven rose color.  Not worth it. (Side note-that super red lipstick look that’s about to get popular? Really looks great on us fair-skinned ladies. Embrace the Pale!)
  8. Look, we both know you’ve been through some stuff so don’t be so scared to talk about it. In fact, use it. Write about it, paint it, and create honestly. If people had wanted you to write nice things about them they should have been nicer to you.
  9. That said…remember also that you are not defined by your stuff. You’re a whole lot more than the things that have hurt you. Be braver than your heart wants you to be.
  10. Stop it with the purple eyeshadow and for god’s sake stop curling your bangs.
  11. Mom is right. About everything. I know, I was surprised, too.
  12. You don’t know this because your high school has no music program but schools will give you money if you’re a piano performance major. Save us both some loans and do it, would you?
  13. When someone offers you an Old Fashioned say “yes amen!” (afteryouturn21)
  14. Add the English minor.
  15. Running is your friend. Get some good shoes and get on it! (also, if you run, you can eat more bread. I know, right?)
  16. All that vintage stuff you love? It’s about to get really cool. Buy it NOW before everyone else does.
  17. Not a lot of guys are going to be interested in you and that’s really ok. It’s not going to feel like it. You’re going to feel like the grossest thing on the planet but you’re not. Guys are. A lot of them really are. And at some point you’re going to meet the best guy and you’re going to be so glad you didn’t waste your time dating more of the others. Also, if you could figure out A LOT SOONER that he is the love of your whole dang life, that would be really great.
  18. Your eyes are NOT too small, your face is not too long and you do not need to lose weight.  You just have some of the world’s tiniest friends. It’s like living in a real life polly pocket. Don’t be sad. You’re totally healthy and normal. You’ll figure it out when you move away
  19. Eat all of the pizza while you can! There’s this thing called a metabolism and it is only your friend for so long. Also, I think what you heard me say was eat a lot of pizza but what I said and meant was ALL. Eat ALL of the pizza.
  20. Embrace the straight hair. (we’re still working on this one.)
  21. Seriously, though. Calm down.


  1. Tabitha

    Love this so much, Faith! There are so many things I would tell my 15-year-old self…and I’m sure in another 15 years there will be things I want to tell 28-year-old me, too. :-)

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