Dear 2018 Ashleigh, this is 2017 Ashleigh. 

I had so many things I wanted to say, but then once I came to write this I had no words to say. So I will try. This idea came from watching 'In Bruges', one of my top 10 favourite films.

2017 has been a rocky year to say the least. A lot of good things have happened (going to Italy, getting into uni etc. etc.) but it hasn't been the best year by a mile. A hell of a lot of family tragedies have occurred and without getting into too much, some other things happened that I will probably remember this time next year. But, you can never stop smiling (I know your favourite thing about yourself is how smiley and always laughing you are, even though you'll never admit it). 

Next year, promise me you'll at least try to deal with things better. Stress is the worst thing to deal with, and we both know you don't deal with it well. I'm talking about forgetting meals (honestly, I forget to eat), losing a lot of weight and just being a constant emotional wreck. Please, please, please deal with this better (it'll help you in the long run!). Also, I need you to continue putting 100% into uni. We both know what you're like if you get anything below 60% in any assignment, so continue to try as hard as possible. Still on the topic of uni, do not feel like you have to study certain subjects even if you don't like them. I know that last year you took economics (a subject which you hate but are quite good at), as you thought it'd help open doors for you, but you don't have to do anything you don't want to. Life is too short to do something you don't feel 100% in. 

In 2017, you realised that you were super passionate about helping people in need and becoming the best person you can be. Don't give this up. Always strive to be better, always aim to be the bigger person. Stay out of drama, focus on yourself and work so hard for your dreams. I promise if you do this, things will work out. And if they don't, then don't give up. Everything will work out in the end, and if it doesn't, then it's not the end. 

You have set so many personal goals for yourself, the two main ones to focus on are to always be as nice and lovely as you can be, and to read for half an hour every night. You've realised that you looooove travel documentaries and books (your favourite is '80 Days Around the World' by Michael Palin) and books about serial killers/murders/mysteries. Please don't forget that. Life is too short to read books you aren't interested in, however please don't pigeonhole yourself. You never know what you'll find if you just open up. 

Overall, I'm super proud of you. You've gotten through a semester of uni, of feeling like you want to drop out, of being super stressed, of dealing with things that stress you out and I am just so proud of all that you have gone through and came out stronger. 

Lots of love, 

Ash from 2017.