I hope you are reading this. It’s a few months before your 25th birthday and you are laying in bed trying hard not to cry. Do you remember this moment? Your birth certificate is on the bed next to you, crumpled from where you had hastily pulled it from it’s hiding place in that safe you never lock. Monday is going to be a big day for you, but at this moment you are terrified. Too terrified to speak about what you found out, and you are refusing the tears to fall because you won’t allow your mind to wander to the what-ifs. But they do, they are wandering to the what-ifs, and it’s melodramatic. You hate being melodramatic, I wonder if you still do.
But I’m scared right now, and I’m praying you are reading this. It’s funny how, for over 10 years you wished for death, and now you will give anything to reach 30. You made that frantic phone call, and the soothing voice on the line did little to allay your fears, but you are going to be okay. Tomorrow you are going to see that handsome trainer of yours, and you are going to laugh and smile. You are going to work and not panic about being reprimanded for doing something wrong. It happens right? Do you remember any of this? I hope you do….Actually, I hope you don’t. I don’t hope you remember that you got upset because you play music and laugh on the phone because it is the only way you make it through your night at your nowhere job, even though you love it right now. You don’t belong here, and you know it. I hope you did something about it. I hope you got your masters, and you are doing something you love, because then you made it. We made it.
5 months, and you will be 25. It’s a big deal for you, because until this point you were shocked you survived another year. 5 months seems trivial now, but I’ll give anything right now to be there. To experience that day. Will the world change? Probably not…or maybe it did. Maybe you remember 25. Did you drink? Laugh with friends? Did you live it? I remember being young and wishing I was grown, and I remember being grown and wishing I would be dead. Now, I simply wish for 25.
I hope you didn’t wish for 30. I hope you welcomed it like an old friend and loved it with the same veracity as you will love 40, and 50 and so forth. I hope when death finally comes to you that you greet her like an old friend that knew, although you wished for her companionship, that she just wasn’t ready for yours, but you still love and accept each other. I hope it is many many years from now. I hope your face changes, and wrinkles replace the smooth skin of your youth. I hope you let your hair grey and that your eyes dance. I want to meet you. I hope at 30 you will meet me in your memory and laugh at my dramatics. I hope you laugh at my youth. I need you too, because that means you made it, and I need you to make it for the both of us.
I hope you got back to Ireland. I know you remember how much we both wanted to see the entire world, but Ireland was the only place that felt like home. It’s become such common knowledge amongst our current friends how much that country has impacted our soul, but I don’t think anyone realizes. I don’t think anyone realizes how much you cry to return to those shores…at least right now you do. You let it all go there. You fell in love…true love…and you learned the magic that still hums through the ancient land as it wound around you before closing tightly over your heart. You remember that moment, sitting on that boulder, your black notebook in your lap as you watched the world just exist. It was a definitive moment for you…the first time you realized that you truly loved the beauty of life. We wanted nothing more than to never leave. We were happy…we were running yea, but we both knew for once we ran in the right direction.
I’m not surprised we fell apart the ensuing year. We lost touch with that magic the minute that plane landed back in New York. New York…the land you love to hate. The baggage that you had left behind was waiting for your return, and as we watched the sun set over Battery Park, we both knew somewhere deep inside that the happiness that still lingered would be ripped from you. I hope you found it again. I hope you stopped looking back on the bad because it wasn’t worth it the time wasted upon the action.
I hope you are still superfluous with your words because that is part of the dramatics that makes the world more entertaining. I hope you stop saying you will write, and that you actually write. I hope you write the fantastic stories mulling around in your head, instead of just waiting for life to happen to you, because that is what we are doing right now…5 months before 25. Remember 15? God, sometimes I forget that I am awake because I am always in my head and the world just feels like a painful dream that refuses to let me wake up. Tell me you woke up. Tell me that you stop deigning that you live and that you do it. I hope you packed the car, and just kept going. Keep going. Don’t stop…not till you are home.
Please tell me you made it home. I think I can look forward to the next 5 years if you tell me that you made it home. That you are back on that boulder, that you made your peace with New York…that you made it to 30. Today has been terrifying enough, and I feel completely alone. We didn’t feel alone at home…granted we had Ana. She helped the magic I think, but mostly she helped you…she helped me. It was dramatic, and gut-wrenching, and something completely out of a movie…but it made us stronger. It made us bolder. A handful of nettles proved it. A broken camera that captured memories you couldn’t see, and a forever stained arm…this is what we took from that moment and I hope you find a way back to it.
I’m being melodramatic aren’t I? Did I mention the terror? The same song keeps repeating, and I wonder if you still listen to one song for hours and still never learn the lyrics. You just listen…to the beat, the tone, the story. No one ever understood it, and hell some hated it, but I hope you still do it. I hope you listen without hearing, and hear without needing to listen and I hope you remember this moment of writing. 5 years….it doesn’t seem like such a long time…but today slipped away and I can’t remember exactly where it went. But I want to meet you, I want to meet you so desperately, and for the first time I truly and terrified that I won’t. Please tell me you made it. I’m scared, and I’m crying alone in a room that I spent a year refusing to decorate because I didn’t want to stay. But I could, you know…stay. You know you could have, but I hope you didn’t because staying here is like the Bermuda Triangle…something will be lost, and right now? I have so much to lose.
I could lose you…and I’m scared. I know you will know why. This terror is different and I hope monday just tells me that I’m melodramatic and stupid. God, for the first time I legitimately wish I was stupid. I hope you aren’t pissed about that. We spent so many years hiding how intelligent we are behind faux-naivety and insecurity…don’t roll your eyes at me. You know it. You know we could have done more, learned more, or at least tried to move beyond it all because we both know it wasn’t hard. It wasn’t hard, we just didn’t feel like doing it. You know I’m right.
I hope you got your masters, and proved the world once and for all that underestimating you was to its own detriment. I hope you still have that fuck you attitude, and that you finally feel as strong as everyone says you are…but mostly I just hope you are happy. We haven’t been happy for so long, and I wish you are happy, and healthy, and fighting to prove me wrong because I do love you. I love you and I hope you love you as well because we deserve it, so please keep fighting. Fight to look back at this letter and mock me for my dramatics, and fight to love and be loved. You have so much to give, I feel it inside, and I’m scared to show it so I hope you do.
I hope you tell everyone you love that you love them. I hope you grab some girl and bring her to dance with you in the rain, and I hope you laugh so deeply that your stomach hurts. Laugh until it’s uncomfortable because I held so much back. I hope you stopped that. I hope you give everything you have because we only have one shot, and you are it. I hope when I meet you that you write another letter, to the next Faith, in 5, 10 years….telling her you hope she turns grey gracefully, and to love her children. But most importantly, I hope you exist, because you are so close…5 years…like 5 months till 25 and I desperately want to meet you, and love you like I have refused to love myself.
I hope you accept me and forgive me, for scarring your skin. I hope you get all the tattoos you want, and tell the world our story. I hope you are brave, and kind, and gentle. I hope you learn to curb your temper, and I hope you still remember how to see the world like we did that day on the boulder, when we were 21 and thought we knew better. I hope you know better than I do now. I hope you dance, and sing, and laugh, and play tag in the dark and drink to old and new friends. I want you to live…more than anything I so desperately want you to live.
I look forward to meeting you. I hope to meet you, please let me meet you. I hope you get to remember me, and forgive me. Please remember, that you are a child of the universe.