I recently graduated high school and I’ve been wanting to write something in regards to this for awhile; but I had no idea what. After I graduated I wanted to take on the task to reread every book I’ve read (don’t panic, for pleasure) through my high school years. But why would anyone in their right mind do that? Well, I’ve always looked to books as what makes a person or as puzzle pieces to life. Books always gave me so much wisdom about particular events I was going through. So, out of all those books, here are my top 10 quotes that probably quite literally saved my life.
Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
“You cut yourself off from all sorts of experiences because you tell yourself you are ‘not that sort of person.'”
“But, I’m not.”
“How do you know? You’ve done nothing, been nowhere. How do you have the faintest idea what kind of person you are?”
Me Before You is truly a heart challenging book. I read this book when I was 17 and ultimately it inspired me to stop limiting myself to so many experiences because I felt that’s not something I would do or am not that sort of person. I think that it’s such a silly thing to put that label upon anyone or yourself. Also, as a teenager, in my short 18 years of lifetime, I have only explored and experienced so much. There’s so much more. Who knew the saying, “you don’t know if you like it if you don’t try it” your mother used to tell you to eat your zucchini would apply to such a deep self exploration concept?
Read my book review here!
There You’ll Find Me by Jenny B. Jones
“The point is,” Becket said, turning his eyes on me, “that guy doesn’t care about the rules. He doesn’t care about the temperature or all the other reasons why he shouldn’t surf. He just wants to be on the water and do what he loves. To be out there where no one can tell him what to do or what meeting he has next. Just the wind in his hair and the salt on his lips.”
Let me start by saying, I read this book 13 times. 320 pages 13 times because it is my absolute favorite book when I was 13 to 16 years old. But I’ll save you the essay about how amazing this book is. Ultimately, this quote talks about our passion. It was difficult for me to invest so much time into writing and photography when people would tell me it wouldn’t get me anywhere. I didn’t care about where it would get me. All I knew is it brought me so much joy and made me feel like it was apart of me. I want this to be a reminder to my readers that are artists; you don’t do it to please people or to make money. There will be many times that you are broken down and discouraged from pursuing these passions. My advice to you is to have a back up plan, smart finances, and never stop your passion, even if it becomes a hobby.
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
“Grief does not change you, Hazel. It reveals you.”
Before you start judging me and think “of course she included this book”; let me say as mainstream as it is, it truly is an amazing book that teaches so much about pain, love, and life. I had so many quotes I wanted to include but this one has applied to my high school years the most. Inevitably, we all go through grief and it hurts so much. But it is so necessary in order to become who we are and to move forward in life. But be patient and kind to yourself. I’m not sure if it will be soon because it took a long time for me to see the good outcome, but the good will come, I promise. This grief does not change you into a new person, like the beast transforms back into Prince Adam, it reveals a new part of yourself that will complete you through the rest of your lifetime.
Just One Day by Gayle Forman
“Or maybe it’s not a miracle. Maybe this is just life. When you open yourself up to it. When you put yourself in the path of it. When you say yes.”
This book in general is one of my all time favorites! Specifically because I identify with the main character in many ways. As an introverted ‘stay on the safe side’ woman this quote really challenged that persistent part of me. I think it’s important as you get older to take advantage of the new profound freedom and explore everything. Instead of taking the sidewalk or staying on the sidelines, push yourself to try new things! With of course, keeping in mind the common sense and safety of yourself.
The Perks of Being A Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
“So, I guess we are who we are for a lot of reasons. And maybe we’ll never know most of them. But even if we don’t have the power to choose where we come from, we can still choose where we go from there. We can still do things. And we can try to feel okay about them.”
Every person I speak to about this book I say it is the most raw and honest book I have ever read. This quote in particular actually reflects a life lesson my mom has taught me repeatedly. It doesn’t really matter where you come from or what you’ve gone through, you don’t have to sit there and dwell in your circumstance. Instead, you, yes you, have, and always have had, the power to keep moving forward and work toward where you want to be. Each of us are not all privileged and blessed with either finances or support. But that does not hold us down. We have the power to be who we want to become and be where want to thrive!
Read my book review here!
Divergent by Veronica Roth
“I am selfish. I am brave.”
There was a time in my life when I became obsessed with being brave. Why? I don’t have any clear idea. But I remember when I would read this book and watch the movies as Tris jumped first, stood out, stood up for what she believed in, or even take a punch to another actual human being how much I wanted to brave like her. In the end, I learned that being brave is standing in the face of your hardships and challenges and pursuing them to the best of your ability with the knowing fear that you might fail. Being brave is not the daunting act of jumping off a building or asking out a total stranger, it’s standing up to the challenge and not fearing failure or the not-so-great outcome. Because truly, that failure or outcome you did not particularly want, can be even better than your idea of success.
The first part of this quote did not identify itself within me until later on. I have been known to be a very kind and generous person. Selfless. But there came a time where those qualities can only take you so far. You begin to neglect yourself, and for any feeling that you may have that could possibly negatively affect someone or something, you start to feel disgustingly selfish. Because why, you of all people, would you negatively affect someone or your situation? Why for once think of your well-being? Well, here’s a little secret. It’s okay to be selfish. It’s okay to think of yourself first and how this problem or situation would affect you. That doesn’t make you a bad person. More simply put, if a dear friend asked you to pay for gas but you were borderline in debt, you can say no. They will understand and if they don’t, perhaps rethink your friend choices. Being selfish can go in many different directions such as just taking a day for yourself, thinking how this relationship choice will affect you, or just saying no.
Her Time by Lang Leav
She has been feeling it for awhile – that sense of awaking. There is a gentle rage simmering inside her, and it is getting stronger by the day. She will hold it close to her – she will nurture it and let it grow. She won’t let anyone take it away from her. It is her rocket fuel and finally, she is going places. She can feel it down to her very core – this is her time. She will not only climb mountains – she will move them too.
Lang Leav is one of my favorite poets simply because she says everything my soul wishes to say but cannot. So this poem in particular represents a time in my life where I was you could say, a phoenix rising from the ashes! I read this poem every time I feel beaten down, discouraged, or find myself living in the past. There’s nothing like finding a poet or author who speaks the same language as your soul.
Read my book review here!
The Tide Rises, The Tide Falls by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
“No, no, no. I’m, I’m just a tourist. Here for the day.”
“Well, I mean who wouldn’t want to buy a villa in Tuscany. But, uh, the way my life’s been going, that would be a terrible idea.”
“Terrible idea. Mm… Don’t you just love those?”