By Mary Hoffman, IV Form
Advice to a “Girl”–What I Wish I Knew
(Based on Jamaica Kincaid’s short story)
Always be aware of your surroundings; never ignore your gut feeling; when you don’t feel comfortable in a situation- leave; the police are always there to help; nothing good happens after midnight; learn from your mistakes; you deserve what you tolerate; treat people how you want to be treated; make your bed every morning, it teaches smart habits; clean your room; dress to impress, people will treat you better when you look nice whether that’s right or not; never slut shame- girls are supposed to support each other; friends and family are more important than romantic relationships; don’t gossip; don’t burn bridges, you’ll be surprised how many times you’ll need to cross that river again; don’t be afraid to cut out the negative influences in your life, friends should bring you up not take you down; keep in touch with everyone, you’ll never regret it; be kind; work on being confident but know it takes time; take care of yourself; try to get outside for at least 20 minutes every day; drink lots of water and try to eat healthily, but don’t beat yourself up over a brownie sundae every once in a while; don’t compare yourself to the girls in magazines- they don’t really look like that in real life; never make excuses for not going to church; be yourself; know it’s always okay to cry; don’t feel the need to hide your feelings; happiness is a choice; smile; be grateful for your education; family should be your first priority; don’t lie; enjoy your youth; you can work hard now or for the rest of your life; follow your passions and never give up; go different places, try different things and meet different people; go outside your comfort zone; be spontaneous; your body’s a temple; respect yourself; learn to play at least one instrument; never suppress to peer pressure, it’s not worth it and those aren’t the kind of people you want to be friends with; challenge authority; all you need is 20 seconds of insane courage and something great will come out of it; don’t count the days, make the days count.
Mary Hoffman is a IV Form boarding student from Sudbury, Massachusetts. She loves music, traveling, and photography.