I was asked about the advice I would give my future children - if I could write them a letter right now, what would I want them to know?
And so, here is my response:
|Ron Swanson's advice is better than mine. Always.|
Dear mythical yet likely awesome future children;
I'm writing this before you ever exist, so bear with me if this version of the English language is no longer in use. Just tell your friends that your mom was "old-school", if that's a relevant term. And if you're on a hover-board, wear a helmet. I worry, ok?
There are a few things that I'd like you to know, some information I can arm you with that may help you throughout your life. Some of it will seem overly-sentimental, some might seem useless. But one day, they will all have meaning. At least, they do for me.
1. First and foremost - time passes. There's nothing you can do about that. Whatever you want to do "one day", do it today. Humans spend so much time waiting for the right moment, that they miss out on the "now". Live in the moment as much as you can, so you won't look back with regrets about time wasted.
2. The older you get, the more important your family will become to you. There will come a time that you miss your parents, siblings, cousins, etc, constantly and wish you had spent more time with them earlier, or that they had the chance to know you better. So don't wait for the older version of yourself to wish for more time with family - do it now. Those bonds are important. (Though I'm sure, as your future mother, I will embarrass the crap out of you quite a bit - it'll make you better able to handle that from others. You're welcome.)
3. You will experience heartbreak. Maybe a lot of it. And if you're anything like me (which I'm sorry for), this affects you more than anything else because you love deeply and fall hard. It's ok. You will learn so much from each heartbreak and gain a better understanding of who you need, what you want, and what you truly deserve. Let yourself feel that pain, but come out of it stronger. And no matter how badly you've been hurt, be good to those who love you when they do.
|Me a week before my 30th birthday, and Daisy. (Since she'll live forever, you already know her.)|
4. I can't begin to imagine the kinds of technology and entertainment you'll have. Robot friends, TVs in your eyelids, virtual reality magical crap... who knows. But none of it, I promise you, is as important as nature. Sounds like idiotic tree-huggery, yes - but if you spend a lot of your time hiking in a forest, sitting by a pond, and swimming in the lake, you'll have a better sense of self and the world around you. So get your ass off the couch and go outside.
5. Any child of mine will likely have the same music addiction that I do. If not, you're hereby disowned. (Just kidding. Sort of.) Embrace that music love. Soak it up like a sponge, listen to everything and anything, learn about older generations through song. And if you think you may want to play an instrument, start as soon as you can. Your future mom is still a beginner guitar player at 30, and wishes she started at 5. But I can still rock the hell out of a melodica.
6. I never used to exercise. My favourite foods were (and still are) deep-fried, fat-filled and delicious. But along with a slew of health problems has come the knowledge that vegetables are not the devil, and exercise won't make me psycho. A healthy lifestyle is about balance. I hope to bring you up with that balance, but in case I don't - eat healthy foods and get regular exercise. Your older self with be thankful that you did. Your body is the only one you'll ever have, unless your technology has advanced in crazy ways. In which case, go buy me a new one.
7. Relationships of any kind are important and take work. That includes friendships, significant others, and so on. The people you surround yourself with have a great affect on your life, so put the work in and make that effort to keep the good ones around. But at the same time, learn to be alone. Throughout your years, you spend more time with yourself than anyone else - if you don't love who you are, that's not going to make for a happy life. So be alone. Learn to dig that. And then having great people around you will be an amazing bonus.
Now go clean your room. And make me a sandwich.