21 Lessons I've Learned In 21 Years

Today I turn 21. At last I am of legal drinking age, and in the eyes of many, an "adult."

I put "adult" in quotation marks because the dictionary definition of an adult is a person who is fully grown and developed. By that definition, I don't think I'll ever be one.

However, I've learned a few things over the years that have helped me grow and develop as a person, and I thought I'd share them with you...
  1. You are entirely up to you.
  2. Not everyone is going to like you, and that's okay.
  3. Don't say maybe when you want to say no.
  4. Be good to others.
  5. Be good to yourself, too.
  6. Don't rely on someone loving you to make you feel whole.
  7. Listen. Sometimes this is all people need. Give them that.
  8. Discuss rather than argue.
  9. Enjoy your own company.
  10. You don't have to have everything figured out. We're all making it up as we go along.
  11. Accept failure as part of the process.
  12. Don't spend more money than you have.
  13. It's okay to cry. It's okay to yell. It's not okay to be cruel.
  14. The easiest way to make a new friend is to just say hi.
  15. Your story can help others.
  16. You are not trapped. You always have a choice.
  17. Nutella is flammable.
  18. Don't go grocery shopping when you're hungry.
  19. Surround yourself with people who make you a better person.
  20. Read as much as you possibly can.
  21. Be the person you needed when you were younger.
Photo by Mark Hunter & Stephen Meirs

Exclusive Interview With... Myself?

I Love One Direction
Sitting down to write this blog post is one of the most nerve-racking things I've ever had to do, and I've been to a Walmart on Black Friday, which (for those of you have no point of reference) is comparable to the stampede scene in The Lion King, and in which scenario I am a young Simba desperately clinging on to a tree branch.

My first blog post! Ah! What can I say to make you like me, to make you want to read more? How can I possibly show you how smart and witty and insightful I am in such a short amount of time? What if my words are misconstrued and my meanings manipulated?

I'm probably overthinking this.

Let's start over: Hi, I'm Sam, and I've been writing since I was tiny. I'm not so tiny anymore, but I'm not very big either.

I'm 20 years old and I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up. All I know is that I like to write things, and people have said that I'm good at it... which is part of the reason I started this blog.

Introductions can be boring, so I wanted to do something different. I decided to interview myself.

[Note: The following is a piece of satire, inspired by this interview between Lena Dunham and Mindy Kaling and the superficial line of questioning women in the public eye are subject to. While not 100 percent accurate, or serious, I think it embodies the things I strive for in my lifestyle, my wardrobe, and my beauty regimen.]
Arriving 15 minutes late, Samantha Yee slides into a booth at a charming brunch spot in downtown Berkeley and begins apologizing profusely for her tardiness, "I'm so sorry! I was having a heated discussion about Dante's Inferno and the human experience with a homeless man across the street. Have you read it?" I shake my head no. She purses her lips in deep thought. "Maybe that's for the best." I wonder what she means, but I don't push her any further.

Among a sea of college students in hoodies and jeans, Samantha certainly stands out in a crowd. She is wearing a button-up leopard print blouse, a black lace midi skirt, a pair of strappy black heels, and a flower crown made of large red roses that perfectly match her shade of lipstick. Heads collectively turn at her presence. [When I point this out, Samantha assures me that this phenomenon is due to people catching a whiff of her patented signature scent. "The smell of bacon does that to people," she deadpans, before bursting into laughter. "It's probably the heels. You don't see too many people wearing them around here, with the hills and everything. They probably all think I'm crazy."]