I’m breaking the silence here to share with you a letter I wrote to myself on New Year’s Eve last last year (in 2012). It was delivered close to midnight last night via email, but I only got to read it this morning. Strangely enough, I made myself cry. Because I seem to have known exactly what I needed to hear even if I didn’t know what 2013 was going to be like just yet. I am definitely sending another one, to be delivered to myself next NYE.
31 December 2012
To my future self,
First things first: Congratulations on making it through the year. Whether you’ve had a good year or a bad year, you’ve made it through another three hundred sixty five days. For people like us (You? Me?) that’s always a big deal. That’s always something to celebrate.
By now, you must have made it through a couple of things, and I am really excited to know how it went. Where did you work for practicum? Did you become President of Book Bench? Are you doing well? What did you do for thesis? How do you think you did?
You’re almost at the end of senior year.
How do you feel?
I know there’s a chance for bad news. So I’d like to make it clear right now that I didn’t send this letter to guilt-trip you, in case you didn’t do as well as we would have liked. I wrote this letter to let you know that it’s okay.
You and I are both in different times, but we are both seated at the edge of the New Year. That means we still have a chance. We can still get better. We can still try again. I hope you believe that. If you don’t, I direct you back to the first paragraph of this letter. You’ve made it through another three hundred sixty five days. There’s always something to celebrate.
You’ve survived another year, twenty times. Do it for one more. I know you can. You know you can.
Ever since we were little, we’ve dreamed of doing big things. Sometimes they still feel too big, but please don’t ever shrink away. Someone depends on you. Someone out there needs your heart to be big. Someone out there needs to know that someone like you exists. Someone out there wants to have someone who’s just like the person you’ve always wanted to be.
I know you’re terrified. But more than your fear, I know you really want to be that person for that someone. Find that heart in you and chase it.
If you’re feeling down: chin up, beautiful. People believe in you, and people love you.
If you’re feeling good, then slow down and breathe. Don’t let your head get too big, and don’t let your triumphs blind you. You are where you are now because of a multitude of people and their deeds. If you’re somewhere great, don’t forget the people who took you there. Always be thankful. Always be in wonder. Always be a little kinder than necessary. We didn’t always believe it, but yes, being good makes a difference.
I hope you’re still asking questions, and I hope you’re still learning. Baby girl, you’re only twenty. We still have a lot to learn about the world, and I hope you’re as excited and hopeful as I am.
I won’t ask if you’re still in love. I’d rather ask if you love yourself by now. Because I’m finally learning. I hope that you’re still that poetic, obscure, curious, smartass girl that I love. I hope you’re happier. I hope you have a better idea of where you want to go and what you want to do. And if you don’t, I hope you know with reckless certainty that that’s okay.
This year, 2012, I finally learned what’s really important in life. And that year, in 2013, I hope you still remember it. I hope you’re still fighting.
Your past self.