99 Things I Wish I'd Learned Earlier in Life


It's that time of year when Kleenex stock prices soar, and your mailbox overflows with senior pictures from relatives you didn't even realize existed: It's high school graduation month! A year ago, my firstborn took that Final Walk Across the Stage, which prompted me to think about my own 18-year old graduating self, and all the things I've learned since that long-ago day. I thought of lessons learned the hard way, and consequences I'm still living with, and I wrote a list of them for my daughter, which I put it inside her graduation card. Some of these lessons, I did learn the hard way. Many were taught to me just in time by my own mother and other wise people. A few, I may or may not have shamelessly plagiarized from similar lists. No matter where the lessons came from, they are still:

99 Things I Wish I'd Learned Earlier in Life. 

Red High Heels With Diamonds

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Lies Pinterest Told Me

6:30 a.m on Memorial Day found me in the kitchen, on my knees, scrubbing grimly at two years’ worth of baked-on oven door grime, swishing a mouthful of coconut oil through my teeth, and wondering where it had all gone wrong.

This particular moment was the fruit of one morning’s Pinterest trawling. Among other things, on that day, I learned about “oil pulling.” It’s this thing where you put a big ol’ spoonful of Extra-Virgin-Cold-Pressed-$7.99-a-Jar Coconut Oil in your mouth, then you swish it around for 20 minutes, in order to “pull” all the toxins from your body. If the blogs are to be believed, once you start oil pulling, you Will Never Have to Brush Your Teeth Again!

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My Other Job

Tired. I'm so, so tired. Of rudeness, and workplace drama, and coffee that grows cold because I never have time to sit down and drink the whole cup once I’ve poured it.

After 3 13-hour shifts in a row, I’m worn out. Weary of demanding patients. Flatlined by dismissive physicians. Drained from vicariously experiencing the nausea, pain and fear of those I work to heal. Just plain exhausted because I’ve been on my feet for 39 hours in 3 days.

But I am a nurse, and this is what I do for a living.

This isn’t the whole story, of course. If it was, I’d be rocking away in a fetal position in the corner of an institution somewhere. Which I’m not doing. No, there are plenty of rewarding things about My Other Job. Otherwise, I wouldn’t do it, right?

Tired Nurse

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