Gee Willikers! I got a letter from the future? Hopefully you will find something of interest in this most unusual missive whose origins will be revealed following.
At last! It has taken me quite a bit of time to be able to share these thoughts with you – time being the key here. Because … this letter is from the future. Your future. You can’t imagine how many strings I had to pull to get the ok, and yes, of course, there were all kinds of edits by the powers that be – but I felt it was urgent to make the effort because – you need to hear these words today. Now, more than ever.
I know the future right now seems pretty … unpredictable? Maybe at times – bleak. You always were a worrier. But even though you may feel like there is nothing you can do today to impact the future – You are wrong, so very wrong. In fact, this is a turning point for you – and others in your life.
What you do today matters so much, so much more than you know. And it is a time of hope!! Just … not the hopes you had before this started. Sure … you thought you knew how things were plotted out – and … hey, you were wrong. A lot of people are feeling the same way right now. Your plans – gone. What you thought was certain … wasn’t really.
Fact is, all those things that seemed so important … some were, some weren’t. What you though you wanted to have happen – well, it doesn’t come to pass. Not exactly, anyway. Of course, I can’t tell you the details – you’ve seen enough time travel movies – they do get some things right. And I know you have a lot of fears that pop up right now, like those stupid arcade games you try to bash down with a hammer, they just return – I will say, focusing on those is a TOTAL waste of time (pun intended).
This isn’t a time for fear … it’s a time for dreams, for choices, for hope – and so much more. This is the moment you get to hit pause and say – where do I want to go from here? Don’t snicker – I know there are limits to choices. But it is time to think about choices maybe you have lived with for a very long time – longer than you remember even thinking about them, so that they seem like reality.
Choices about character, honesty, openness … how much you share of your heart, how much do you value belonging over authenticity … and what is your place in this world? Things have changes so much, seemingly overnight … where do you belong? What lies ahead? Funny thing, sort of anyway, is that the answers don’t matter as much as asking the right questions. Of yourself. Kind of like picking out what star to navigate by, back when there was no other way to find your way to where you were headed.
I know you have already gone through a lot of changes, more than you thought you could handle, I do remember. I know it was tougher, tougher than others around you could see, and you felt lonely. Afraid, uncertain. You recognize now that pretty much everyone around you is in that same boat, in one way or another.
You want answers to the big questions – so does everyone else. Well, most do. Some stopped even asking, maybe that worked for them – not for you though. So here’s a preview – you don’t get all the answers. Even in the future, we still don’t have those answers. But keep asking those questions. The questions lead you to making the choices that lead you at least toward the answer. Kind of like candles on the path.
Heres the thing. We were brought up in a time and place to believe certain truths. Yep, the “big” TRUTHS!!! Time passed, and life didn’t seem to operate the way we were taught – it didn’t really fit. And others … they had different ideas. I remember all the years of soul searching and wanting to “know”, wanting “Be sure” … well, I can tell you, absolutely, there is a TRUTH that you can count on, right now. Especially, now.
You are loved. You always were. Even when you were at the deepest places of pain and could never believe you had what it took to be worthy of love – you were, and are, and will be. There is a source of that love outside you – one you cannot understand, or fully know, or explain – and all the people who say they know the Truth, well, they probably know some of it, but not all of it. And that’s just how it goes. The thing is, knowing that truth isn’t just for you to hold on to like some magical wand that makes everything ok – because it isn’t just for YOU, of course! THIS is WHAT YOU NEED TO REMEMBER RIGHT NOW.
Every day for the rest of your life, you can be a channel of that love! You know this now, but hey I am just reminding you, ok? You don’t have to be perfect, you don’t have to have answers for anyone – just … reach out. Reach up, outside yourself, open you heart, close your eyes … receive that love that comes from the source of all you know and feel … .wash in it, dance in it, sing in it …. Wrap yourself in it … and then …. Give it away. Give it away. Give it life, in the way only YOU can do – not having to be anyone else, in any other place, with any other changes in your life. Today. Now.
It’s ok to not have the answers, not know what is ahead ….. it’s how we walk through the passage before us that makes the difference. Trying, failing … asking forgiveness, and forgiving … most importantly accepting ourselves and others right as things are today, not perfect, never will be … and doing it together. In love.
The very best you have to offer those in your life, now and to come, is the deepest part of your heart. The part that some told you to hide, to put shields around, to try to conform to what someone else said you “should” be. It’s time to break out of that cage, because that’s the only way to let that love pour through you like a river of light and life, step out of the shadows, sing and dance and welcome tomorrow.
We get through this. Yes, we. Sure … not everything ahead is candy and ice cream. That was never the idea, you know. There’s some more hard times – and like they say, the fire refines. I know. I know, because … yep, of course, I am you. The you that lies ahead, that your choices today bring into being down the road. I’m waiting for you to catch up – it’s going to be great! The time you have ahead is time of joy. Joy to share with others. The discoveries you make …. The growth … it’s all good.
Have faith … even when you can’t see those lights. Hold on to hope … and share it with everyone you can, even just a little – somehow, giving it away brings it back to you. And …. Love. Doesn’t have to be perfect – just from the heart. Love, always.
Back to July 2020! As I write this, we are just over 100 days since CCC (Covid Confinement Commencement). I’ve been posting here on “The New NormL” just short of 3 months, and a lot has happened (and not happened) in that time. Originally, I’d planned to start months before – but my perfectionist nature had a hard time determining exactly what I wanted to write about. I just had a deeply felt sense that I needed to find a way to put my experiences and thoughts “out there” in hopes they might help some who, like me, was trying to find their way through to a better place. Over the years I had written periodic little missives to friends and family – generally at holidays – and after all the changes in my life, a blog seemed to be the “next step” in whatever path was calling me. When I registered the site in late 2019, I was happy with the name –long before we heard the phrase repeated incessantly- but still didn’t feel I knew how to bring out what I hoped to create.
So I wrote the “letter to the future” to introduce my blog to all the people I hoped to stay in touch with, all the walks of my life. But as I reviewed it, I realized – it was pretty selfish. Perhaps too cheery. Perhaps- not really what I needed to say. Ultimately, I set it aside and never shared it to announce my new blog.
Now, after months of awaiting what we used to call a return to normal, it has been getting to me. I haven’t wanted to write as much – the accumulation of imminent dooms assaulting us constantly, whether through the news, zoom meetings, the crises that family and friends are experiencing, or nightly fireworks for weeks that invade an already restless night. I know I am not alone in facing the internal voids which a “busy life” somehow helps us pretend don’t exist – but now are felt more deeply than ever, perhaps. My personal belief is that openness about what I call my “expensive lessons” may help others somehow; that even though your own challenges, or those of someone you know and love, may be very different from my own – we all share certain commonalities. I am not a paragon of faith or optimism, but ultimately I would like what I share here to offer hope, even though I often struggle to find that myself.
My June 12 post, “Quiet words of hope to a stranger”, had mostly been written years ago. A friend asked me after that post whether I had looked at it over the years since then – years that changed by life perhaps not completely, but significantly and rapidly – and seen the value in those words still for myself. The truth is – I wish I had. Perhaps all writing is primarily for ourselves to some degree, but I try as much as possible to pull out from my writing something that can speak to anyone. If you hear or feel or think about something from a new perspective because of some story I share here, I cannot ask for a better reason to continue – and I do plan to find my voice, to dig deeper, and to continue to build the new NormL. Perhaps this “letter from the future” somehow needed to reach me today, just as the letter to a stranger still echoes lessons and foundational truths that seem fresh again when brought back into focus have a long way to grow and go ahead. The chasm between who I long to be and who I know myself to be seems to grow larger with the years, but we keep easing on down that road.
We have a wonderful neighbor who shared with me recently (from a distance, masked) that she sends herself flowers every Friday – a gift from her present self to her future self, with an encouraging note. What a wonderful concept! So perhaps my own “letter from the future” is something you might like to try your hand at as well – just for you. Be aware, though – you may realize something about yourself that you had buried or forgotten, and you might discover something new – but it’s worth the effort. Sometimes the voice we need to hear the most really is our own, it just needs to “break through” all the noise that has buried it for too long.
Music has always lifted my heart, and somehow the old songs carry with them not only the beauty they held when first discovered, but like fine wine, the memory and realization that our lives have come a ways, and we have much for which to give thanks. Here is a link to a song from the past that perhaps will awaken renewal of hope for you as well.
My next project- a letter from today me replying to my future self. I have no idea what I will be saying! But I will do my best to be there in the future and hear it when that day arrives. There is a tomorrow. We will meet there one day. Let’s keep climbing, together. Until then – as future Norm says – love, always.