To: me From: me

I spent a huge portion of today sorting through a huge box of all the schoolwork I ever did from kindergarten to 10th grande, plus some personal project type shit. My parents had it stored in their shed and my mom has actually been bugging me to go through it for like a couple years but I was always like… nah. But they recently re organized the shed and so today was the day. Honestly? hahaha. honestly it was so fucking emotionally draining to go through all of that stuff. Like…. oh my god. it was so emotionally draining. It took like 4+ hours and I was so fucking exhausted when it was done. I felt like someone ripped my soul out and then shoved it back inside me. I don’t know. Some of it was cute and funny but a lot of it was really sad for me and some of it was just … ugh. I dunno. I threw the vast majority of it into the recycling bin, and just saved a few morsels and mementos that I thought were important pieces of myself. I remembered a lot of things I didn’t really need to remember. It broke through my robot shell and made me feel real feelings. God, my child self. I was so fucking weird and confused about everything. I don’t even know how to fucking process it honestly, so I’m going to do my best, by writing a letter to my past self. And here we go.

Hello baby me. Hello small time self. I’m so sorry my darling. I’m so sorry. You said you wanted 100 reptiles when you were 25, and now you are 27 and you have two, so that’s something. But you aren’t a zoologist or a botanist or an artist. You aren’t anything really. You’re alive. You’re working on yourself. I know it’s not what you wanted or what you planned. Times is hard my tiny self. My fresh faced me. Times is hard. You were the cutest kid in your second grade class, you know. I know you don’t know but it’s true. Possibly for the last time ever, you’re the cutest in the room. Okay. It’s time to talk about something else now. God, I’m so fucking sorry you have to feel this weird shit. You instinctively know that it’s not something you should talk about openly, or ask the grown ups about, and you’re right. That’s good. For right now it’s just for you to know and feel. I read some of your writings. You were about 9 I think? Maybe only 8. You didn’t date it, so I’m estimating like an anthropologist based on sediment layers and handwriting and language use. God, I’m so sorry. You wrote such a detailed, descriptive story about yourself being a dog. But all the details are about your interactions with your “owner”. (you named him tim for some reason????) and how he was training you and about how he chained you up to stuff when you wouldn’t behave and god, I’m so fucking sorry. I know how weird and confused you feel. You want, you yearn, you obsess over certain things that make you feel a certain powerful way, and I know. I know. It’s so weird and undefinable and you have literally never ever ever seen or heard of another person feeling this type of way about anything and it makes you feel isolated in a way. Yet, at the same time, it feels so natural, it is always a given for you, and how could something that natural and pure be bad? It isn’t, my sweet small self. It isn’t bad, but you need to relax and breathe.  Please, just wait. Just give yourself some time. I swear to you, my spry young self, you’ll get it someday. When you’re a few years older you’ll find a certain book at the library, and you’ll be brave, and you’ll check it out. You’ll read it and your heart will alight, and you’ll understand. I love you. You need to stay safe, and I know you can do it. By the way, the grown ups aren’t always right. I know you’ve seen a few examples of this, instances where you knew you were right and they were wrong, but you still see them as above and beyond. They aren’t. Sadly, I’m one now…  and I know that I don’t know shit about the world or about anything. Adults are fallible,  all of them. even your parents. They’ll all fuck up and they’ll all hurt you in stupid, imperfect human ways. Even if they love you they will. Be ready. Be strong. I love you. I believe in you.

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