Dear Mrs. ____,
You probably won't believe what I'm about say. Recent discussions with your colleagues about anti-aging cream that can prevent unforeseen wrinkles and freezing their eggs through your company's employee benefits can make a past seem too implausible to be true. And when your friends are popping babies like they’re molly (or whatever the “it” drug is in the future) I know it will be hard to believe me.
But take my word for it when I say this— You were once twenty years young.
Under eye concealer is a rarity used on special occasions—hangover Sundays and family get togethers. The Asian lady who waxes your upper lip says she’s never seen skin as clear as yours. Mom has been saying that for years but it never held as much validation. You’ve suddenly come to acknowledge its milky white undertone.
34 B. Size 2. 108 pounds. These numerical values denote your figure—the ones girls say they envy, the ones boys say they want. External beauty is temporary. Your hair, a chamber of frizz and curls, stands for everything you believe in. Free-spirited. Open-mindedness. Carefree. Don’t straighten your hair. Your Middle Eastern roots—literally and figuratively—don’t have to change for the hair of the future.
They say you look like Anna Kendrick. They as in the shrieking girl who stopped you to take a double take on 7th avenue. They as in your ex-boyfriend’s new girlfriend who you’ve yet to write about in your Burn Book. They as in everyone who meets you for the first time. They won’t say that in ten years. They’ll stop you in the streets because they recognize you from Forbe’s Most Powerful Women or the hologrammed billboard on 34th street chronicling your latest book. Dream big or go home. (Do they still use that phrase in 2025 or has Kanye West come up with something more grandeur?)
The most important thing I want you to know is that present me will not chase after the guy that broke your heart all those years ago. I’m doing this with confidence because I know you’re sitting on the mohair rug in your living room floor laughing at the prospect of being with someone who never fell for you, when you’re married to the man who did.
Be patient for the sake of your future self and be true to your past self.
This week's MR writer's prompt urged viewers to write a letter to their future selves. "Do we know things now that could help us in the future that we might unwittingly disregard once the future turns into present? Did that question just explode your mind? It’s true that what we go through shapes who we become — and what a welcome, comforting thought it is to know that what doesn’t kill us does, in fact, make us stronger. But I think it’s also important to remind our future selves of who we are now. What we like and don’t like and what makes us happy as well as sad." Take note, this piece is a mix of fiction and non-fiction writing.