Dear Raechel (age: 16)
I’m writing to you from London, where you have been looking for a place to live for about two months, sofa surfing isn’t as glamorous as it sounds! However the fact that you are making the move out of South Wales is ridiculously exciting and you will love it.
So you are making some big decisions and trying to sort what you want to do with education and life- go with the things that you enjoy and the things you want to do. Don’t choose the subjects that you think make you ‘more intelligent,’ choose the things you enjoy and are good at.
It’s fine that none of your friends are considering going onto university, don’t let that stop you. Don’t worry about the finances (you get a tuition fee loan and a maintenance grant- you don’t pay upfront as you think right now) or leaving friends and family behind, you will love it, it will change who you are and the people that care will still be around you when you need them.
Make more time to do the things you enjoy, dance more, play more sport, see your friends and family more. You would love it if you could dance at least one hour a week 9 years on, so make the most of it! Also pick an obscure Olympic sport- you’ve got 8 years to master it and win gold at London 2012 (how cool would that be yeah?!).
One last note- Don’t start dying or straightening your hair, you will regret it, it will stop your hair growing and you will forget what your actual hair colour is!
From Raechel (Age: 25)