I just received a letter from my 9th grade self.
It was an assignment in letter writing for my Freshman English class. Our letters were supposed to be mailed to us in the summer after high school graduation, but they were misplaced and only recovered recently. Turns out to be a welcome case of serendipity.
I was a bit nervous about opening my letter – concerned that it was going to be overwrought and overflowing with adolescent angst. I was also a little concerned that I wouldn’t recognize myself in my past self at all – that either I have gone too far afield or my young self was too grounded in a forgotten life. Instead, the letter was cheerful, friendly, and optimistic. Reading the letter left me feeling satisfied and happy. Beyond that, I discovered that I like that 14-year-old girl from Peaks Island! And importantly, or at least it feels important now that I see it, the person I have become seems to be someone that perky island girl might like, too.
I really do not believe it! You have graduated! Are you still alive? What are your plans? I’m so excited! Sure, you’re leaving good ‘ol PHS but its changed because of the renovation anyway.
Where are you going, Harvard, Yale, Stanford? Or maybe not such an expensive college? What are you majoring in? Math, Literature, Journalism, what? (…) Is anyone else going to your college?
Did you get any awards or scholarships? It’s OK if you didn’t, though. Did you go to the prom, jr. prom? With who? (…) Were you on Varsity Math Team this year?
I am excited just thinking about graduating! Are you still on the island, in Portland, or what? If you’re still in the boonies, how come you didn’t get emancipated?
Plans for the future – college, acting, traveling, maybe writing a few books. I want to do everything!
There are so many things I would like to ask you. Just think back to June of your freshman year of high school. You’re sitting in your room. It’s all red and white. The Radio is on 93MGX, but you can hear the TV downstairs. It’s been really hot all day and it just started to rain, a thunderstorm. You can smell Mom’s supper (smells like spaghetti and meatballs). All your stuffed animals are staring at you, and your movie posters decorate the walls. It will never be like this again, but it’s getting better.
Help the earth!
Love and good luck!