A Letter To My Future Self: A Lesson On Showing Up
I’m writing this for myself. So I can look back on it one day and remember. Because this is important. And this is my true expression. Every so often I will go back and read my old posts, as a way of remembering the journey. And this week one of the most significant things in the world is happening. My brother is getting married. Maybe it doesn’t sound so significant but to me, this is everything. My heart is feeling so much. As children, my brother and I used to share the same chair because we wanted to sit as close to each other as we could. We wanted to laugh and whisper to each other about all the adults in the room and tell our inside jokes. We would make up games together and the whole neighborhood would join. We would burst out laughing in a dead silent church making the pastor glare to the back of the room. We would listen to phone conversations from our mom in the other room and make up our own silly questions as we patiently waited for her to say yes or no into the receiver satisfying our laughter, we would put treats in front of dog’s nose and have her take us on rides around the house, we would front flip from the ledge of our couch onto the pillows below in between our mom turning around to put the dishes away… and as we got older, we learned to play guitar, him way better than me, we started competing in gymnastics, him better than me, and we started going to proms with our classmates. Soon I left for college across the country and life started changing. He fell in love with his prom date and I fell in love with my coworker. I started a business and stopped coming home for summer breaks while he spent his summers in sports. And slowly our friendships shifted. We graduated college a thousand miles apart, him with a stethoscope and me with a powerpoint. We called each other for the big achievements, birthdays, and speeches but no longer shared the same chair. He got engaged as I moved across the world. And slowly the calls became less frequent, the flights home more spread out. It’s all pretty natural, and although the transition happened over time, it hit me all at once. Kind of like stepping on a scale after a cruise.
He is about to embark on yet another a massive life changing event. This time I am right by his side, as he awaits his bride to walk down the aisle. A new sister. An addition to the family. I write this out of joy and sadness as tears stream down my face for both. An ending and a beginning, only a few are fortunate enough to understand. I also write this as to remember this moment and to remind myself that I will always be there for my kids. As they go through massive moments in their lives, and no matter where I am in the world, to be there. To show up. To be present. I stand in the aisle with joy for the future, knowing it is all just beginning, yet regret for the past, knowing I could’ve shown up more. Taken more flights. Prioritized someone who meant so much to me. And as an eventual parent, the lesson I will carry with me through this.