Dear future Natalie,
I wonder (and worry) every day about what you are. Did you realize your dreams? Are you writing every day? Are you happy?
.. Because one day when I’m at my deathbed, that is all I want to know– whether I lived a life that made me happy.
If you make it as a writer and are on the brink of giving up, remember where I am now– 22 and enthusiastic about the future. I hope you are not jaded, and I hope you don’t get tired of writing. If you ever need a reminder of why you ever wanted to write in the first place, remember how words have the ability to move people in ways other things cannot– and you have been vested the opportunity to weave those words into meaningful stories to inspire everyone around you.
I hope that if you are far away, you call home every now and then. I hope you are not selfish with your finances and are capable of sending money home to mum and dad who so deserve it after decades of toiling for you. I hope you never resent your family for their shortcomings, and I hope you remain close to them. If you are near home, I hope you visit them often and talk to them. I hope they have their health and are able to do whatever they have always wanted but couldn’t afford to do.. And it is up to you to help them with that. If you live in another country, fly them in to visit you once in a while. I am sure they would appreciate that very much.
I wonder as well, who are the friends who have stuck by you through it all? Do you even keep in touch with any of your old friends? If you do lose touch with them, remember all the times in your youth when they were there for you and supported you through thick and thin. I hope that these are the friends who will carry you for a lifetime.
Do you get married? You have to. Most girls fantasize about their dream weddings, and I hope you had that understated, intimate wedding you always wanted. I hope you marry someone you truly see yourself being with for the rest of your life. I hope you never falter in your love for him and never exhaust the efforts you invest in your marriage. Is he your best friend? He has to be. I also hope that you do not make the same mistakes our parents did in their marriage, and instead, turn their mistakes into lessons for your own marriage. On top of that, I sincerely hope you do not let me down in my belief that true love really exists.
Are there children in my future? As much as I do not want any, I believe that I will have them one day. I hope you make an amazing mother and shower them with love and care. Also, remember that if they do not grow up to love reading, you have failed as a parent in the eyes of the 22 year old you. I hope being a parent changes you for the better, and eradicates our irrational fear of needles. I hope your children bring joy to our parents, and to you. I hope that your children grow up with strong morals and a thirst for learning like no other. I do not know what the world will look like in 10 years, but by the time you have children, I hope you teach them that the world is theirs if they set their mind to it. I hope you bring up your children to be intelligent, kind, compassionate and loving, and I hope they do not become insecure, or even worse, self-absorbed and shallow.
You’d better have dogs, too.
But most of all, I hope that you live a life worth living. I am extremely excited to meet you someday.