I will always have endless letters to write to myself


Me and my two siblings, back when I was still to be a marine biologist.

I am nearly approaching the end of the era I have found myself trapped in the past few years. I am past the point in my life where it is realistic to say, “I don’t want to think about college,” and where I can pretend I will be surrounded by the same people I am today forever. 

Since the beginning of high school, I think that is how I would classify this period of my life, and for a majority of that time, I likely would’ve used the word above, “trapped,” to describe my position. Plagued by a lack of control, and living under someone else’s command. Plagued by ignorance, plagued by the fact that life will never be that simple again. 

I need to make a few decisions in the coming months. How far I want to move from my parents and friends, how much debt I am willing to go into, and what I want to study. Only once I have answered all of these questions will I be able to decide what school I want to attend. Decide the track I will take for the duration of my education; in some way, the track of the rest of my life. 

As lucky as this position felt just a few months ago, it feels incredibly intimidating now.

I wanted to be a marine biologist up until nearly 6th grade. I was sure I would find myself at UCLA, possibly playing soccer, studying marine biology. This was before I had any concept of reality obviously, but it was exciting and comforting to have a plan, realistic or not. It is like those letters you write to yourself to open in senior year—to open soon—that say, “I will be friends with these girls forever, and I will live on the beach in a mansion.” In youth, these claims are not ignorant, simply blinded from realism. I would like now to have one of these empty claims for the predictions of my future. I am staring forward, blind. 

This was before I had any concept of reality obviously, but it was exciting and comforting to have a plan, realistic or not.

So, as I construct this story—my final story for The Central Trend not only for the year, but for forever—I feel as if I could never say enough. Yet, I think I will always have more to say, so suggesting that I could ever say enough would be naive. The letters to my future self will forever be fictional and inaccurate, but the letters to my past, are flourishing yet conclusive. 

They read differently than those addressed to who I may be. It helps when I know who I am writing to. 

I don’t always like who I have been, but I credit myself with the recognition and change of many of my bad habits. That is something I am proud of. I am grateful that I have allowed myself to become more of who I am and less of what people want me to be. For learning to understand my limits and not belittle myself for struggling. Learning how to own who I am is the best thing I have done for myself. 

As I begin to move on, to what, I am not sure, I can’t say exactly what I hope for myself. I have no idea what I want. Simply, I just want to continue to grow, and for the letters to my past to continue to be positive. I hope to continue reflecting positively and to have something to be proud of myself for. Past that, my predictions for my future are no more accurate than my elementary school letters.