A Modern Twist on Letters to the Future.
“The power of creating a better future is contained in the present moment: You create a good future by creating a good present.” — Eckhart Tolle
Hey, I’m Shelbie. Welcome to my first piece.
I’ve always been one to think about the future. In the sense that whenever I daydream, most often it is about what the future will be like, what will my daily routine at 29 years old be? How will I meet my future spouse? When will I have children? Will my career be what I want it to be in 10 years?…all of that jazz.
I recently wrote the beginning of a song called, “To: Future Me, From: Present Me” (I included the snippet if you want to listen to what I have so far)
The premise of writing this song is that you can only hold on to paper for so long before it gets lost or disintegrates. Whether it is within a move, or somehow gets thrown out, or just gets lost, or becomes 70 years old and it has water stains and your leftover spaghetti sauce from 2017 spilled all over it. It’s also hard, if you’re writing a letter to yourself, to actually give it back/read it when the time comes. So here I am writing a letter to myself within this song, touching on the aspects of grasping adulthood while navigating the traumas that I went through as a child. Along with that, understanding that in order for my future children to have the childhood and life that they deserve and the childhood that I wish I could’ve had, it needs to start with me working on myself.
So, with all that in mind, I came up with this idea that I would create an email for my possible future children, my possible spouse, and my future self. Of course a journal is a better idea if you prefer to physically write, but for people like me who are able to write with fluidity when you type (Or fear that the spaghetti stains from 2017 will come back and haunt you) this is the method for you.
I want to be able to send an email to the email accounts that i’ve created at any moment where I feel like my future “home” needs to hear about what is happening in my life. Whether it be, my 22 year old self learned a lesson for the first time that completely changed the way I think, or my 22 year old self overcame a fear that I didn’t ever think I would accomplish, or even if I had a great day and I just want to share it and be able to look back on it when I’m 50. It’s hard to know what the people in your future will have to learn one day, and if I can put all of my life experiences into an online medium that they can read through one day, and hear experiences from their own self/mother/wife/etc. at different stages of life, I won’t have to just teach or love physically, I can teach and love through my past self and experiences and I think that’s one of the coolest things like…ever.
I also started this because I fear that I will forget a lot of this journey as I grow older. As my current self in my early twenties, I don’t remember a lot of my childhood. It comes and goes in waves, and there are things that I’ll remember somedays if I smell something that cues the horn of nostalgia or if I hear a song on the radio that I listened to on bus rides to middle school, but the memories don’t come naturally. With this new method that I’m sharing with the world (although I’m sure I’m not the only one who has come up with this idea, so credits to you as well fellow forward thinker) I want to be able to recollect as much detail as I can, and I don’t know how future me will recall her memories, so this helps in that sense too.
Nonetheless, I don’t know what I’ll write to my future home/homies/home roommates- but I do know that I’m excited to look back on my past self when I’m notified of the 10 year reunion to check in on my career. I hope you all can also take part in this new and exciting future letter endeavor. (If you do, pleasseeeeee tell me how it goes.)
Til next time,