A little cheesy, I’m sure, but I glimpsed this on my FB feed and something about this made me smile. I’ve written a letter to my past self before s part of a challenge for a good cause, but this…this is a little different as far as where the perspective is.
Right now I’m looking at my 29th birthday. I had no idea this much time passed since I started writing this blog at just after 24. I had no idea that it was possible to grow as much in five years. Heal. Love. Learn. Everything. It’s been a journey. And it’s still a reminder that yes, there’s plenty more work for me to do and plenty more places to travel to, and shoot, etc. It’s also a reminder to think about what else you want in your life.
–Dear Future Self,
You opened this envelope and you likely smiled, thinking about how old-fashioned or sentimental putting pen to paper is. But that’s who you are. Look around your apartment now, look around where you live. All the things have a classic, simplistic feel to it. You hadn’t changed in that part of you, and nor will your letter style. In fact, I bet that you’d gladly do a pen and paper letter again if you knew who’d like it.
You likely know plenty of those folks too.
I hope you still listen to jazz music. Especially contemporary jazz. Or smooth jazz. Or whatever it’s called. You know what it is, it went right to your soul those years ago and launched everything you ever dreamed of. Do you still listen to Black Diamond by The Rippingtons when you’re walking over the Brooklyn Bridge? Or while driving? Do you still wake up to Spyro Gyra’s Morning Dance when you’re on vacation? Do you still write The Index Series while listening to Four80East?
I hope you do. I hope that life sustained your creative streak, not extinguished it. What’s your current camera? Computer? You love your technology. Do you build furniture still? Work out? Swim? I hope you keep yourself active; yours isn’t a spirit that’s meant to sit still. Same goes for your body.
Keep active. You have the strength of three people – better make it ten to be sure. But if you still have that bum knee, the plus side is you might yet be called Bionic Woman.
Keep your mind active too. You like puzzles, numbers, and chess.
Stick with accounting. You are good at it.
Stick with your friends. They need you. You need you too. Even at your weakest moments, you are the strongest of rocks, not just for them – for yourself too.
And if you have a husband again, then I hope that he’s the one you need. I hope he challenges you, and delivers his best when you challenge him in return. I hope he makes you feel like someone soaked your nerves in jet fuel and threw in a match. I hope you give him a run for the money. I hope you both know each other – really know each other – down to every predictable small habit, but can keep an element of surprise to yourselves. You need a challenge, a fiery challenge as tough and multifaceted as yourself. And I don’t know whether to wish the poor sap luck or cheer him on, but I hope that apart from being what you want, he is also what you, above all, need.
Stick with jazz. It’s more than just music. Its sound was a love affair with your ears at fifteen, it was a business by twenty-eight, and if ever are you in doubt, remember: it all started with a show. Music has been there for you before. It will always, without fail, be there when you need it.
Travel. Travel like you used to when you were 24; board the plane with excitement, leave your stress behind in the terminal, and keep seeing new things. If you already crossed off your destination list, I know you have another one you’re working on. Keep working on it. Keep going the way you always had. Tunnel vision is an art form. So is gumption.
Trust your judgment and your instinct. They will never mislead you.
I hope that, right now reading this, you know that you reached your goals, set new ones, and kept reaching higher. It’s not the achievement, it’s the determination that counts the most, and few beings in this world have as much gumption as yourself.
And never forget that red wine, usually, cures all ills.