A Letter to Little Me - My Biggest Regret

Dear Little Ben,

Here I am, your future 25 year old self, wanting to have a chat with you about what’s to come. I’ll tell you what, it’s not going to be that fun of a time.

Remember that everyone makes mistakes. Some are pretty big and others on a much smaller scale. I’m still writing to you, so things haven’t been too awful to us. I want you to learn from the mistakes I have made, so that when you are my age, you won’t have to resort writing something like this to your younger self.

You are a first generation born Chinese-American in your family. You’re not going to understand or even know about the cultural clashes that come from our parents and American culture. You’ll simply abide by “what mom and dad says,” and that’s ok, but be sure to know which advice to heed, which ones to question. This will improve your growth tenfold.

Little Ben, my creativity at this age has been dismal. I’ve been trying to figure out why that is the case. If I had to guess, it’s because of how I was controlled as a child. Children are brilliant in the way that they can experiment on things with no real consequence. It lets their brain develop in ways that allow them to flourish.

I however, feel I did not have that luxury due to the way I was raised. I was controlled. Things were done for me because I couldn’t. Whether it be making a diorama or making a map of the world, I was unable to do these things myself because they were done by my parents the majority of my childhood. Not because I asked them to do the whole thing, but because when asking for help, it went from assistance, to taking over because it was taking too long. I have heard, “Why do the teachers make up these projects that the parents always has to them?” far too many times. I understand why the projects asked a lot. They’re meant to make us thing. In my case, I never really got to think. I suffered the consequence by not taking initiative to progress my own growth. I was shielded for too long to do what mom and dad thought was the right thing to do.

So where do we go from here? Most importantly, where do YOU go from here, little one? Well, the answer is simple. You know the problem. The solution is to be able to identify and avoid what’s to come. You’re a good kid with years of wisdom beyond anyone’s imagination. You need to tap into it earlier in order  to benefit your future. Mom and Dad will view this as a rebellious phase, but that’s ok. You need to do these things to exercise your brain, expand your creativeness, and become more confident. Too many times have I not been able to do things due to my lack of confidence. You will be great.

Little Ben, I wish you luck in your adventure. I hope you never become what I am now.


25 year old you