Here are some of the important lessons I’ve learned over the years:
Sixth through eighth grades brought about new life lessons learned the hard way. The predominant theme through these years was that puberty is just awful. Also, I experienced my first loss when my Grandma Mitzi passed away when I was 11. My woes, like my boobs, were blossoming. That's when I found out that acne is not the worst thing that can happen to you. (Having acne and chin hairs is much, much worse. But still not as bad as losing someone you love.)
College was where I really learned that I had talent. No, I’m not talking about my award-winning performance in the 1993 Alpha Chi Beer Pong and Fish Filleting Tournament, though that was pretty memorable. I’m talking about my writing career. I won a few awards, got some praise from my professors, and started learning how to hone my craft. The perfect pencil-holders of the world could kiss my essay. I was good at this writing thing.
But not great. I discovered that perfecting your craft is a lifelong learning process. I left college with a degree and the realization that I had no idea what I was doing, but if I wanted to write professionally, I should get better at it.
I also found out that life can be pretty okay, even for those of us who hold our pencils the wrong way. I’ve learned that and that you shouldn’t believe everything you read on Facebook, because nobody is really honest about their worst days online. Heck, just look at this guy’s profile picture. I went to kindergarten with him. Nobody’s teeth are naturally that pretty a shade of blue. People lie about how great their lives are all the time. Regardless, their success is NOT your failure.