154MC – Reply to ‘Letter to self’
Dear younger me, So a year has gone by and I’ve sat at my desk with a cup and tea and read my letter to myself from last year. I bet you never of thought yourself drinking a cup of tea, but bigger things have changed than that in the past year. I started my letter last year saying that I should be honest with myself, as this letter is for my eyes only, and it’s only fair if the response is equally as honest. You’re still stressing about the future and what direction you’re going to take with your life, but that’s okay, you’re getting closer to knowing what you want your life to become. You’ve made a lot of friends, which has made settling at Coventry a lot more easier. You’ve said in the letter that ‘The friends you make at University are ones for life’ I can certainly tell you now that you’ve met amazing new people and those will be in your life for a long time. Those complete strangers you were scared about meeting and living with, they’ve become your best friends. Although you’ve lost contact with some friends on the way, you’ve gained much greater ones. You’ll met a special someone called Max, I won’t tell you much about him, as you have a lot to go through and enjoy. University is nothing like you thought it was going to be. It’s not the same as the typical American movie where a student takes only an apple and a notepad, because it’s not that easy. University has been an emotional roller coater but I wouldn’t have changed anything. The course is everything you expected it to be. I’ve certainly learned so much across what photography is. Coming from an A level Photography to a degree level, it was a big step and you didn’t know as much as other students did, but you’ve gained so much knowledge that you didn’t know existed about the subject. From digital cameras to film and medium format cameras, you now know more than what you ever learnt in the two years in sixth form. You have also had lots of opportunities to talk to guest lecturers and current lecturers too, which have developed your interest in the subject further. You have experimented with different genres that you have grown a love, which you didn’t expect you would enjoy. You certainly never expected to have produced the work you have this year, however nonetheless I love it all the same. You have a lot of people to help you with the course if you need help and advice. The people on your course, the second years and your lecturers, are all helpful and who are as passionate about the subject as you. It’s great to share a passion to other people who share the same feelings with you. Living independently is something you’re still struggling with as sometimes you just want to go home to have Dad’s famous spaghetti, but that’s normal. It gets a whole lot better. I’m so glad that I came to Coventry to study the degree you are most passionate about as you’ve gain some lifetime friends that can never be replaced. It was an amazing idea to go to a university which was a three hour train journey away as you’ve only gone home four times throughout this year. It’s understandable that you were scared going to a place where you knew no one. But it was worth it in the long run. You’ve settled in so quickly and instead of asking where places are, you have people asking you for directions. Coventry is now you’re home, and it’s even better than your hometown. Accommodation is something that you’ve got used to, and sharing a toilet with six other people is not as bad as you thought it was going to be. Your family are the main people who have supported you throughout this year. Especially with finance. I hope that you can repay them back when you’ve reached graduation and started a new journey with the job that you’ve always wanted. It’s been amazing to know that they can help you no matter what, which they have done through this year. I still stand by my word in saying, things will never be perfect. Within the year, there are friends you thought you were going to stay with you but life doesn’t always go your way. The friends you have now and the ones who you’re going to keep forever. Happiness is your own choice. If you’re not happy, then you can change it. You’ve certainly done so this year and it has been the best decision of your life at University. In the letter, you ask me that if I am happy. This moment is the happiest you’ve ever been, so you have nothing to worry about. Advice to my younger self. I’m still only 18 so I feel like there are a lot of things I can’t give you advice on just yet, but I know there are stuff that you’re worried about and I just want to let you know that it gets a lot better. That grade that you wanted to get, don’t worry, you get there. You have amazing new friends and equally amazing old ones. Your interests have taken your life in new and interesting directions. Looking back on what you’ve done and who you are, I promise you wont regret much. Keep on being the proud and headstrong person that you are and never change for anyone. But there are things you gave up way too easily, that I wished you kept around. I get there is a lot of stuff going on internally and because you are incredibly emotionally constipated you won’t say anything to anyone, but let me tell you, everything that you’re feeling is totally valid. Self-confidence isn’t what it used to be, as you’ve grown so much from being a student who didn’t say anything in class and wait to for someone to make a conversation with you. The future you’ve got for the next few months is brilliant. You have a lot to look forward to. If you want some practical advice, I would say get into reading novels sooner, its inevitable so you have a lot of catching up to do. Photography at degree level is hard work, but you’re stuck with it. Don’t let it destroy what you love to do.