I think that teenage me was unnecessarily hard on herself and stressed about things that worked out absolutely fine. She was doing okay, really. If I could, I would let her know that.
1. You will be glad you of all that time spent being single.
R is my first proper boyfriend. We got together when we were 20, so I spent a lot of my teenage years either feeling like a bit of a weirdo for not having had a boyfriend or feeling cool and independent. It probably depended on how much Sex and the City I had been watching at the time.
I’d tell her not to worry, because having time to yourself is so important. It helped me realise that I do not need a relationship and I can be just fine on my own. It also gave me the opportunity to enjoy being single in my first year of university, I could concentrate on growing a fantastic group of friends around me.
I know it is possible to make friends and be in a relationship, but during the first year of university when it was all new and exciting and overwhelming, I personally might have found it hard to manage a relationship as well. I know that might not be the case for people who are not as socially inept as me though.
It also helps me to appreciate my relationship. While being single can be a lot of fun, I do remember it being lonely at times. All relationship statuses come with their advantages and disadvantages!
2. Cooking is not as lame as you think.
I was notorious at university for not being much of a cook. I lived off pasta with tomato sauce and £1 pizzas. My thinking was why would I spend hours cooking a big dinner when I can cook pasta in ten minutes?! FOR NUTRITION LAURA.
I got together with R towards the end of the second year of university and failed to impress him with servings of my effortless meals, so I let him cook for me or help me cook for him. And now I can actually cook a little bit!
It is not that lame, it is quite satisfying when you eat something delicious that you have made yourself. I also imagine it to be a bit like potions at Hogwarts and that spices it up a bit.
3. Make the most of those long summers
I feel like if I was now given the prospect of three months off, I would save up some money in advance and go inter-railing round Europe or something. Unfortunately teenage Laura refused to think that far ahead. I would spend my summers flitting back and forth between my university house and my mums house while watching all my money go towards rent and counting the days until that sweet sweet student loan came through.
4.If you don’t revise for your exams, you will fail.
I already knew this. At school I was the geeky one of the geeky group. However at university I discovered that I was not quite as studious as a lot of other people there. This was also the first time that I actually had friends who studied Physics, which was fantastic, but offered the odd opportunity for distraction. I remember once sitting confused in a lecture and my friend whispered how’s it going? To which I replied I have no idea what’s going on. Then we erupted into giggles at the back of the lecture theatre. Awful behaviour.
I was used to going to lessons, understanding everything, doing homework, revising, passing. But at university there were a few classes where it went: go to lecture, do not understand everything, stumble through homework, very half heartedly revise, fail. Then I would have to retake the exam over the summer, and who wants that?!
5. Start your blog!
I spent AGES thinking about whether or not I should start a blog. I was worried I wouldn’t keep at it or that no one would read it or that everyone would think it was terrible. I should have just done it, because while it would not be as organised as this blog I think I would have been good to blog my time through university. And think about how much more blogging experience I would have now!