at seventeen…

How did that old song go? We learn the truth at seventeen…
I loved that song, then, but I realize now that there is so much you haven’t learned at seventeen, so many truths the world still has to show you.

My niece is seventeen today. And for her gift, she requested a post about her, humble girl that she is. So, I thought I would share a few of the things it took me longer than seventeen years to learn…not that I’m finished, yet.

Don’t give up too much of yourself for love. Ever.

Your heart will be broken, more than once. But you will survive. You will do more than survive, you will grow, each time.

The world is a tough and crazy place. It is also wonderful. It will,
at times, knock you down. But you will always get back up.

Be confident. And when you are not, fake it. It almost always
turns into the real thing.

Be sure to laugh, every day. I mean it. There is always something to laugh at, even if it is yourself. (Just call if you are ever short on possibilities, you can laugh at me.)

Stand tall. You are already tall, so don’t slouch. Stand up straight. Tower over life.

Don’t give in when you know you are right. Not right as in correct, right as in righteous. And understand the difference.

Learn how to compromise. It is a valuable tool that makes life easier. For everyone.

Learn how to forgive. It is a valuable tool that makes life easier.
For you.

Dance. Sing. Be happy. Without caring what anyone else thinks. Whenever and as often as you can.

Live with grace. Say please, and thank you, and always hold the door open for the next person.

Never stop learning. Keep asking questions. The more you learn,
the less you know.

Make waves. Especially when standing still is worse than the problem.

Go out into the world. Explore. Expand your horizon.

And most importantly, eat lots and lots of pickles.

Happy Birthday, Goofball.

13 Responses to “at seventeen…”

  • Tracy & G. Says:

    Happy birthday, Q.! Sending you lots o’ joy and well wishes!

  • Kimberla Says:

    Wisdom never goes out of style…

    Happy birthday Q…

  • beth Says:

    what a great gift you just gave her !
    if you weren’t already, you are now the numero uno auntie in her book !

    and your words of wisdom are amazing !…..i tried to think of something to add and all i could come up with was chocolate… chocolate along with those pickles !

  • Deetz Says:

    You are so loved…you are a very lucky girl Happy birthday “Scooter”

    Nana & DT

  • Cristina Says:

    A lovely gift wrapped in wisdom and tied with love. Happy birthday Niece-of-Yours!

  • Quinn Says:

    I love Mrs. Mediocrity!<3 Thank you so much 🙂

  • Vonda Says:

    Don’t give in when you know you are right. Not right as in correct, right as in righteous. And understand the difference.


    Happy Birthday-Her niece!

  • Bluestocking Says:

    “The more you learn the less you know” So true. I love it!

  • Erin Says:

    What amazing and wonderful advice! My daughter is turning 17 soon; this would be sonderful advice for her!

    xo Erin

  • georgia Says:

    this is awesome. she will cherish this.

    i think it is important for older, wiser people to give things like this to younger people… gifts of words and advice. i wish i had been given more of this kind of thing when i was younger.

    finding in my mid 30s that i wish i had learned things sooner… not the hard way, i wrote something similar to my best friend, who is about 12 years younger than me. i gave her a list of 25 things i wish i had been told when i was younger. a list of things to heed and, thus avoid regrets later. i think it’s important to share things with young people so that they don’t have to find out some day and wish someone had told them. otherwise, why should we learn lessons {besides for ourselves} if not to pass them on to others and spare them having to learn it the hard way.

    your list is great. good advice for us all… no matter what the age. you are a very kind aunt.

  • Jennifer Says:

    Beautiful. Q is one lucky niece. (And I expect Mrs. M. is one lucky aunt.)

  • Debi Says:

    Happy 17! Eat lots of cake. Your aunt is wise & wonderful but she left out the cake part. Blow out your candles, and don’t tell anyone your wish. 🙂

  • Kate Says:

    She’s already wise, asking for this as a gift. Wonderful advice. Every single line.

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