Dear 2019 me,
Updated: Feb 9, 2022
I’ll sidestep the cliche of “it gets better” by telling you off-the-bat that it does not. In fact, it gets much worse than you could have imagined.
You’ll fall in love with Ireland just as the world seems to fall apart. A deadly, infectious virus will spread, sending you back to your parents’ house in total isolation. You’ll break both of your arms and have to go through surgery, and in the fall there won’t be classes, football, or the senior year you imagined.
No, my love, it does not get better: you do.
You’ll learn to appreciate so many things you once took for granted: running into old friends, having a reason to get dressed in the morning, the busyness of restaurants and movie theaters. You will find hope and strength that you didn’t think you were capable of and that, at times, you weren’t. Despite everything going on, you’ll still make room for laughter, love, and new friends.
It was hard. I won’t bother to pretend that it wasn’t. As much as you try to hold on, you’ll eventually have to let go of all the hypotheticals and what-ifs. There’s no point pretending any of this didn’t happen and there’s no going back to the way things were.
In questioning everything you’ve ever known, you’ll find answers. Albeit, not the ones you were expecting.
And while there are plenty of mysteries left to solve, there’s a whole 2021 ahead of you to do so.
Good luck. You’ll need it.
Your future self