A Letter to my 16 year old self (Inspired by Ames)


It has been almost 14 years since I last saw you.
Almost half my lifetime ago.
You are about to take your 'O' Level Exams to determine which path you'll take for the next 2-3 years before serving NS(not THAT bad as it sounds).

So why is an older version of yourself writing to you?
1. Warnings!
2. Words of Wisdom
3. Cos I have nothing better to do while waiting for students to show up for class. (YES! You end up a teacher (for now) and possess dry humour)

[Secondary School]
Please do study harder for your 'O's.
You'll do just fine at the pace you're at and after some running around (literally), you eventually get into the JC you want.
But before you do that, it'll be great if you had more choices. Don't just aim for the school you want.
Aim higher!
Prove to yourself and others that you can actually achieve anything you aspire to OR you might end up having to "prove yourself" every step of the way in the future.


[Junior College]
Eventually, I think, you'll end up in CJC by choice.
Don't worry.
You'll make great friends, some of whom you still keep in contact with whenever you are back in SG.
[Oh! Did I forget to mention? I am not in SG at the moment.
I have been in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia for the
better part of 8-9 years.]
As much as you want to study Arts, perhaps consider Science.
It is easier to get better grades in (especially with you brain) and, trust me, it will be easier to get into any University with better 'A' Level results (DUH! But I did not even consider that point when I did it 14 years ago).

Your ECAs in CJ will also make the best memories while you are still young.
1. LOM
2. CAC
3. Christmas Play
4. Orientation Facilitator
All good stuff. Just don't neglect your studies.
Even in Arts, you'll be great in Year1. You'll be within the top 10 students.
Great Achievement!!!
But you will not do well in your 'A's.
There are a few reasons and maybe you can avoid them if you take heed of my advice.
  • Don't slack off.
  • Don't burn out. Study at a slow pace.
  • Don't skip school as much cos of a measly ingrown toenail. Get the operation done, heal up, go back.
  • AVOID THE HANDBALL TOURNAMENT!!! Your knee will be injured permanently.
  • Don't get your heart broken by a girl who won't give you the time of day!!!
  • On the final night of the Christmas Play that you Directed, say a few words. Thank the people involved with the production, the actors, the stage hands, the teachers who helped and encouraged us, and God who guided us through the whole process even though we had no script at the beginning.
  • Start eating healthier and do a little more exercise. The injury won't help this of course but at least start now. You'll thank me later.
  • Finally, don't lose contact with the people at church. Especially M. You'll regret it completely one day.

Maybe you'll turn out better off than me after 2 years in JC. I sure hope so. There were so many regrets and incorrect choices I made back then and I wish you never have to experience them yourself.

[National Service]
You know...one weird thing is that for 2.5 yrs after your 'A' Levels, your time spent in the Army will not be all that bad, BMT included.
Perhaps this is thanks to that injury I warned you about.
Having a busted knee does reduce the intensity of the training (Maybe that was not really a good thing in retrospect).

This will be the best time for you to get fit.
There is a lot of free time and you pick up some skills as a mechanic.
Learn something new every day or just implement a better business process (OMG...IT Jargon) in the workshop.
If only you have the knowledge I have now...sigh!!!

The people you meet in the Army will also lead your life on a different path altogether. Someone will introduce you to Hui & Kuah, an agent for overseas studies, mainly for Australia.
YES...that explains how I ended up in Australia...but that's another long story for another time.

Your 2.5 yrs will sail by like the wind. Gone before you know it, and like the wind, a distant faint memory.

So that's the run down/preview to the next 5 yrs of your life.
I sure hope so.
As cliche as it sounds, those years you'll never get back.
Treasure them! REALLY do!
Take more photos and make more memories.
I can't recall much anymore but maybe it's because I took so many things for granted back then.

So that's all for now.
What to know more?
I'll write again to let you know what happened once I arrived in Australia and started another phase in my life.
Maybe you can learn from it too.

Till then,
Your Older Self

1 comment:

sleepingbeast said...

Obviously you are not an English teacher, otherwise you would have caught the "(especially with you brain)" part.

And you will laugh and understand that friends will take the piss out of you anytime. But still care for you.

And you will enjoy it. That's an order. :P