On June 12, 2017, I turned 21. Didn’t feel any different from turning 20 and maybe just a bit different from turning 19. And this considering the fact that it was my first birthday so far away from home and completely without family.
Didn’t feel any different that particular day, but definitely was feeling different every day of the year that led to my 21st birthday. Let me tell you, leaving your comfort zone can teach you a lot. If you are willing to learn. I was.
So here’s what I’ve learned as I approached my 21st year of life on this weird planet.
1. That not getting drunk on your 21st birthday is just as fun as not getting drunk ever in your life. Because you can at least remember what you were feeling and thinking on that very BIRTH day.
2. That as a woman you shouldn’t be ashamed of wanting to look beautiful and sexy. Because you were born this way baby 😏
3. That stepping out of you comfort zone is so hard and terrifying you should totally do it. Because we evolve when we challenge ourselves.
4. That spending time and effort and money on any kind of education pays off. Way to go, smart pants! (P.S. Boys do like smart girls shh🙈)
5. That mum and dad will always be there for you, even if they are a thousand kilometers away. Because… I don’t know, they are just almighty, it’s a mystery 🤔
6. That you would never be a well-rounded, multi-faceted personality unless you travel and see the world.
7. That confidence is the best way of showing people how cool you actually are. Because you are cool, aren’t you? (Yes, you are.)
8. That sometimes you just need to freaking cry when you are sad. Because otherwise you might end up hysterically screaming and smashing subjects against the walls.
9. That having one best friend is so much better than having hundreds of acquaintances. (Though having a few close ones on top of that is even better!).
10. That I will never understand how my brain works. Because sometimes you just have to accept yourself without self-digging.
11. That the more you learn, the more you feel you don’t know anything.
12. That a lot of people may seem sympathetic to your problems, but only the fewest of the few of them actually are. Because one person would never completely understand the feelings of another person.
13. That everything in life comes for a reason. Don’t ask me why. Just because.
14. That the best way not to get fat is indeed not to eat a lot. Daaaaamn, whyyyy. Because this is life, Iryna. Life is unfair. (but fun)
15. That money can’t get you everywhere. Networks, though, can. Because that’s the way human nature works − accept this, my friend.
16. That first impression is indeed often wrong. Or at least too “shallow”. You got to know the person to form an opinion about him/her. Because all of us are a lot more complicated than we imagine. (see point 10)
17. That you can turn what many people said was your weakness into your biggest strength. Hello, I’m Iryna, I’m a chatterbox. Teachers always asked me to keep quiet in class, stop chatting and laughing, or I would get into trouble. Instead, I got into PR. And I’m talking my way through. Because I can 😎
18. That haters gonna hate. You can get disappointed about that and even sad – after all, it’s perfectly fine to wish to be liked by other people. Just don’t focus on that for too long. Move on. Because people have biases, and no matter what we do, we cannot change this fact. Judgement is a part of human nature. So why care too much?
19. That being a celebrity is actually very hard. Because you are always being watched, which means you’ll always be moving around the cities in limo 😦
Just kidding. How could I have learned that? 🌚
20. That love can come in different forms and variations. Because… I read that in a book. No, seriously. Here, have a look at a short version.
21. That in Canada you write learned instead of learnt. Because “you are not in England, Iryna”.
So, honestly… I think I haven’t learned that much in 21 years. Well, at least I’m having fun. Are you?
Yours, forever curious 👋🏽