January 20, 2014

Ten Years Ago Today

Ten years ago today I had just turned eighteen years old and I didn't have a worry in the world, other than that douchekabob college boyfriend that I had at the time.

I somehow managed a social life, eighteen credits of dance and academic classes, taught dance for 30 hours per week, coached cheerleading for 15 hours per week, waitressed for 25 hours per week, and bartended for 10 hours per week. Now that I think about it - when in the hell did I sleep?


Malibu Baybreeze with Absolute was my drink of choice, Taco Bell was my go-to dinner, Mean Girls hadn't even debuted yet, I thought that I was fat even though I weighed twenty pounds less than I do now, and I had big aspirations to open a dance studio.


I never, ever would have thought that I'd spend time living in West Virginia, Texas, Florida or Colorado. I never would have believed you if you told me that I would pack my entire life into two suitcases, live outside of the country, or have to rely on a man's money to buy myself something as cheap as a coffee because I couldn't work and didn't have a dollar to my name. I never would have imagined that I'd visit Paris or that I'd be able to order a real German bier and bratwurst in the native language while living on German soil, or that I'd have best friends who live all over the world. I always wanted a Yorkie, owning a bulldog would have never crossed my mind. I was convinced that me and my high school boyfriend would eventually work things out and that we'd live happily ever after, and if someone asked me to go to a hockey game back then I would have laughed in their face and said "Hell no! That shit is boring!"


It's really, really funny where life takes you, isn't it? If I were to be completely honest -  my life has not even in the least bit turned out how I envisioned for it to ten years ago. 

And you know what? I am so, so thankful for that. Because I honestly can't imagine my life any other way now ... and all of the things that I didn't plan for back then have been the best moments of my life.
I don't dwell on or regret any of the decisions that I've made over the past six years that took me away from my personal dreams and aspirations and brought me to where I sit today - but I often wonder - what would that headstrong, motivated and independent eighteen year old girl think of me? Would she be proud of me and how our life turned out?


What would your eighteen year old self think of you? 
Would she be proud of you?

xo,
Kym

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91 comments

  1. I think your 18 year old self would be very impressed with where you are today, Happy Birthday and have a wonderful day. My 18 year old self would be very shocked but I believe very happy

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    1. It was on the 2nd but thank you so much, Linda! I know my 18 year old self would be shocked that I slowed down, I think a little disappointed that I'm not still involved in dance, but very happy that I'm happy :)

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  2. This is such a cool perspective. Loved reading it!

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  3. It is so true my life has turned out completely different then how I envisioned it just 5 years ago. I thought I would be with my high school/early college boyfriend and be settled into a perfect career. Instead I find myself living with the man I am suppose to be with in a foreign country and I am loving how life has turned out. I think your 18 yr old self and mine would be proud of what kick ass lives we are leading!

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    1. Ugh if I tried to patch things up with my old boyfriend I'd likely be divorced by now lol. I think that our 18 year old selves would be very happy that we're happy :)

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  4. Love this :) My life is so different that I had imagined it growing up, but I'm happy! Glad you are the person you are today!

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    1. Even though my 18 year old self was a judgemental betch - I think that if we're happy now, then our 18 year old selves would be happy with the way we turned out :) I'm happy to hear you're happy, that makes me smile Alli :)

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  5. YES! because she would see that despite things coming around later in life, I didn't settle. Thank goodness I didn't get the life I envisioned, my life is so much better. FUn post.

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    1. I agree with the settling thing ... I sometimes wonder if I was just doing the day-to-day thing because it was comfortable with it. I'm glad I didn't settle for that life - my life is FAR from settled now, and that's something that I often struggle with, but I wouldn't change it, that's for sure :)

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  6. I think my 18 year old self would be happy with me now because I was able to move on from what happened in my life with my family and that I am who I am :)

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    1. Your comment made me smile, Julie :) Have a great week!! xox

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  7. Your 18 year old self was so much like mine, and look how much fun we had back then? But how far we have come now? It's amazing, and just shows how much we learn and grow each day and each year… Thank you for sharing Kymmy… I loved my 18 year old self but I love my 28 year old self so much more x

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    1. I'm glad to know that we would have been friends "back then" too ;) ... and I agree - I love and miss that carefree girl ... but I love this version of me so much more, and I hope that my 18 year old self would, too :)

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  8. but for real, when did you sleep?! I love this perspective! and also, happy birthday!

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    1. I'm really not sure - before there was Red Bull, Dunkin' Donuts and Taco Bell gave me wings ;)

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  9. I was 18 years old three years ago... But even in such a short time I never thought that my life was going to be the way it is now. Probably my 18 yr old self could never expect that I have turned the way I am now. Good in some ways, but also bad in other ways...

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    1. I think that I went through a mental "growth spurt" of sorts when I hit 21, and then another when I hit 27. It's funny how we think we know it all when we're 18 ... I'm glad I have a bit more perspective, experience and reality than when I was 18, thats for sure!

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  10. Oh I love this post. I've been silently reading for awhile, but this really stuck with me. I'm about a year older than you but I was doing most of the same things back then too. Something to think about for sure.

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    1. Well thank you for not lurking anymore, Samantha!! I'm glad that you liked this post and thank you for commenting :) It's crazy to think about 10 years ago, and wonder what the next 10 could have in store!! xo

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  11. Yikes, scary to think if my 18 year old self would be proud of me. I think so, but just like you said, I don't think she'd believe for one second that this is how her life had turned out! What a great perspective... your blog posts always have a unique twist and I love that!

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    1. Yeah .. ten years ago, I definitely did NOT think that this is how my life would turn out ... it's kind of crazy to stop and think about what the next 10 years might hold! And thanks so much babe, I take that last line as a compliment. xoxo

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  12. Well... it may sound silly but even though I'll only be 21 in a few months, I am so proud of where I am today. I have gained a voice and changed in so many ways.

    Happy Birthday, you're beautiful by the way!

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    1. It doesn't sound silly at all - you deserve to be happy!!! And thank you so much, you're as sweet as pecan pie :) xoxo

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  13. My 18 year old self only liked to party. If I knew then that I'd have 2 kids by 25 I think I'd laugh. Kids and marriage were far from my mind at 18. But I wouldn't change a thing.

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    1. Haha my 18 year old self was definitely a party girl, too. Maybe a little too much because I'm practically a grandma now ;)

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  14. I think mine would be shocked at where I am now! Married at 23? Never dreamed of it. Grad school? Never wanted anything to do with it! Living in NH? Last place I said I ever wanted to be. I wouldn't change any of it for the world though!

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    1. I think your 18 year old self would be very impressed with you, Jenn <3

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  15. what a great post on perspective. happy birthday!

    Jenn
    With Luck Blog

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    1. It was on January 2nd, but thanks so much Jenn! xo

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  16. Love this!! Isn't it funny how we thought we had it ALL figured out!? Happy Birthday chicka-d!!

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    1. Gosh I was so much smarter back then than I am now, 28 year olds know NOTHING! ;)

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  17. I wish I had been as good as you taking pics during the college years. Some of the best times were had back then and I don't have much documented proof.

    My 18 year old self also thought she was fat, even though she was in some of the best shape ever. I think my 18 year old self would be super-duper proud that she was able to get her butt out of Connecticut and finally living in Florida and married to a wonderful man instead of the douchenbrautens she was dating in college :-P

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    1. Hahaha - trust me, some of my college pictures I WISH weren't documented lol!! And I literally just laughed out loud at your douchenbrautens, I'm going to have to add that word to my collection ;)

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  18. My favorite read today. Why? Cause just the other night I was having this conversation with my husband. I never ever would have thought I would be where I am today. And I couldn't be more thankful either. Even though I still haven't finished school, my 18 year old self will still give me points for being married before 30 and being 65 lbs. lighter. She was good on compromises. And yours would too. Your beauty and happiness radiates daily... and that is something contagious I would be willing to catch ;)

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    1. Hell to the ya, girlfriend - I give you major points for being 65 pounds lighter, that is such an accomplishment my friend!! That you for your kind words today, I love that this post resinated with you. I think that our 18 year old selves would be very happy that we're happy, even if we didn't do things "their" way ;) Have a great week Brianne! xo

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  19. Tie post has got me thinking about my own 18 year old self and how she never could have imagined where I would be now! I like to think she'd be super excited to think of where she could be in 5 years time!

    As usual my dear, amazing post! You are pretty much my new love read.

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    1. I know, look at you Miss World Traveler! I think that your 18 year old self would be astounded with your accomplishments and free spirit :) xoxo

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  20. I think my 18 year old self would be surprised at how close my life is to how I thought it would be. Not every part, obviously, but all the big things turned out right.

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    1. I'm so happy to hear that, Jamie :) Have a great week! xo

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  21. Loved this post! I look back on life like this often -- it's crazy to think about how you pictured life back then and how things actually turn out. Sometimes I wish I could go back to 18 to tell that girl that every little thing was gonna be alright. ;)

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    1. Awwww I loved the end of your comment, Ashley! I remember stressing about so many stupid little things back then - I wish I could go back and tell my 18 year old self the same thing, and maybe slap her around a little bit ;)

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  22. Aw. I'm almost going to be able to write this same post in about a month! Isn't crazy how fast time has flown by? And where life has taken us? Wow. Sometimes it is just crazy to think about how different life turned out for than how I thought it would!

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    1. It's so, so crazy how fast time flies by. Sometimes it makes me sad that I didn't accomplish the things that I wanted to ten years ago ... but look at the 80 year olds who go back and obtain their Bachelor's Degrees! Anything is possible, but right now I'm enjoying life and (trying!) to take it day by day, and I hope that you are enjoying the moments that make up life, too! Thanks for stopping by Meagan! xo

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  23. I loved every word of this! It's hard sometimes to have a "no regrets" attitude because frankly, there are things I would rather have not happened or done... but at the end of the day, when I realize that every single occurrence had to have happened to get me to where I am today - I know that I wouldn't trade any second, good or bad, for the world.

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    1. I LOVE every word of this comment, Caroline! It's all so, so true. Sure, there are things that I regret, I think regrets are a normal part of the "growing up" process -- but you're right, if I didn't make the mistakes I've made I certainly wouldn't be sitting where I am today. And today, I am happy. And I hope that you are too! Have a great week! xo

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  24. I was just thinking the other day about how different my life is than I imagined it to be just a few short years ago. It's funny how things work out & how what you once wanted seems so strange now. I'm so glad that things turned out so different & yet so wonderful for you!! I think your 18 year old self would be proud!

    Jamie @
    The Growing Up Diaries

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    1. It's soooo funny how things work out. Imagine ten years from NOW? I think that your 18 year old self would be very proud of you as well my dear! Have a great week Jamie! xo

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  25. I am coming up 29 in 5 months time and I am nowhere near where I thought I would be. I feel disappointed in many aspects of my life. I am hapy that I have gained independence but my life I feel alone. I didn't think I would be so alone and have caved so much how I have. Maybe I'm just having a bad, negative day but I definitly think I would have been in a different day.
    M xx

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    1. Chin up my beautiful buttercup! It is so easy to get down on ourselves for the "coulda woulda shoulda's" ... but I truly do believe that it takes just as much energy to be happy as it does to be miserable. I'm always here for you my friend <3

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  26. she would be proud and so happy to have a baby boy to make her life so great

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    1. Your comments made me smile :) I hope that you have a wonderful week too, Nicole :)

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  28. What a good question to ask oneself...I'm in the same boat in that at 18 I never would have imagined where life has taken me but I Love my life and wouldn't change it! On the flip-side there are a few things I'd like to go back and tell my 18-yr old self haha

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    1. Haha I definitely would like to smack my 18 year old self around a little bit ;) If we are honestly happy, then I think our 18 year old selves would be proud of us, because I know I sure as hell was searching for happiness back then in allll the wrong places! Thanks for stopping by Kels! xo

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  29. Oh I loved reading this. Oh how silly our teenager selves must think we are. Great post!

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    1. Haha, I agree. Mine would be embarrassed of myself that I run to Walmart in sweatpants lol. Thanks so much for stopping by Katie :)

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  30. This is an amazing post. I really loved reading it. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. I'm glad that you enjoyed it and I hope you could relate! Have a great week Tracey! xo

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  31. My 18 year old self would be so disappointed by my life right now. Of course, that was 16 year ago. I thought for sure I would have this awesome job researching the newest disease or something like that.

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    1. ​Awe, don't get so down on yourself, Angie!! I KNOW there are certain things my 18 year old self would be disappointed and maybe embarrassed in ... but I also know she'd be happy and proud. I'm sure you can find the same!! xo ​

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  32. omg, I can SO relate to this! It is crazy how quickly life changes.

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    1. It's bananas, eh!! Kinda crazy to think about how much will change in the next 10 years!

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  33. I think 18 year old you would be proud of how your life turned out :)

    18 year old me would be a bit shocked at what I do for a living (21 year old me not so much) and the fact I'm not married or a mother still.

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    1. I definitely had my life planned out, and had intentions of being married, in a house, with a kid or two by the age of 25! Silly young girl ;)

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  34. That's so awesome. Your life seriously sounds amazing girl, I'm only 19 but I never thought I would be where I am today. I never would've thought I'd be with the guy I'm with- we used to play Legos together when we were like 5! I never thought I'd ever go to Europe or live in Germany for two months. Its crazy how my life is already different than I would've expected.

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    1. Aweee! That is so sweet that y'all have known one another since you were five!! That's super cool you lived in Germany! What city where you in?

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  35. Just found you from postcards from Rachel! I have an English Bully too, his name is Watson :)

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    1. Ahhh! I love that name for a bully! They always have the silliest names!!

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  36. I 100% agree with you… I am SO glad my life turned out nothing like I thought it would when I was 18! :)

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  37. I loved this post. I'm twenty three so my eighteenth birthday doesn't seem too far away, but even now I can bet my eighteen year old self would never guess the path I'm on right now. I'm a caregiver and wife to my husband who has cancer. That was never in my plans, but I wouldn't want to be married to anyone but my sweet husband right at this moment.

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    1. My heart and thoughts and prayers are with you Brianna <3 You are such a strong and loving woman, and I aspire to be a little more like you in many ways. xoxo

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  38. My 18 year old self would be freaked out at what can happen in 10 years. I'm living on the east coast… NEVER thought I'd leave the state of MN. Life is crazy, but I'm so happy where I am. It's one of those things i don't think about very often. Thanks for bringing me back. We learn so much in our twenties.

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    1. I smiled reading that you're so happy where you are :) We DO learn so much in our twenties! I think I had a mental growth spirt around 21 ... then 25 ... and I think I'm going through another now lol. It's crazy to look back on the last 10 years, and to look ahead to all that the next year have in store!! xo

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  39. I love this, it is so crazy to think about where we were 10 years ago, funny how much changes and how sure we were 10 years ago that it wasn't going to.

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    1. I know, right? I wish I could go back in time and smack some sense into myself, lol!! Thanks for stopping by Sarah! xo

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  40. Oh man... what a great post!! My 18 year old self definitely wouldn't have dreamed up that I would be where I am today. It's crazy where life takes you isn't it?! So worth the ride! I think I'll have to add this to my blog to-do list if you don't mind?

    Life is Peaches

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    1. SO crazy, Jennifer! And I'd love to see your post, make sure you send it to me :) xo

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  41. HAPPY Birthday :) I loved this post! Your wedding photo is stunning :)

    http://neatly-packaged.blogspot.com/

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  42. there have been moments when i have stopped and thought "wow how did i get here?" those moments mostly happened when i surprised myself and went completely out of my comfort zone and thrived. but where i am right now, i feel like everything in my life has lead me to this moment (im getting married in 3 weeks). i feel like every big decision i made lead me to him. i feel like every bump in the road prepared me for him. if my 16 year old self knew what i was doing, she would be like waaaaaaaa???????????? what happpened? but i am so glad i have grown out of my sixteen year old self! because everything has lead me to the amazing man i am marrying in 18 days!

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    1. Eeek! Married in three weeks! You must be so excited and nervous and ahhhh!! Sending you so much love and happiness <3

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  43. This was awesome!
    My goal is to make my 18 year old self proud everyday :)

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    1. I'm glad that this post resonated with you, Sara! I like that goal ... I think I'm going to adapt it into my every day life, too ;) xo

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  44. "douchekabob college boyfriend" Bahahah... had me one of those myself. :P
    I'm so with you... I'm not where I thought I'd be but I'm SO incredibly GRATEFUL for that now!

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    1. Bahahaha! My BFF told me that I was being too nice when I wrote that lol ... gotta keep it somewhat PG13 in these parts ;) ... and EXACTLY! I am SOOOO thankful for the path I chose to take! I'm glad that you are, too! xoxo

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  45. I'm positive your 18 year old self would be proud of the woman you are today! You are so strong willed, hard working, determined and caring. What more could that girl ask for?! Glad you got rid of the douchekabob & got Brutty.

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    1. BAHAHAHA your last sentence made me literally L O L. Wuv you wong time Samantha G almost Samantha E!

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  46. Yes! My 18 year old self would be SOOOOO proud!!! I dreamed big and accomplished even bigger!

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    1. Your comment made me smile so big, Andi! You truly do live a life of experience and accomplishment :)

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