A letter to me (circa 1995)

Dear Phyllis,

Can you believe high school graduation is just a year away?  I know, it can’t come soon enough.  You are so over high school and Concord and the past few years.  But, listen, don’t wish it away too quickly.  Because, honestly, you’ve got it pretty darn good.  Some of these people will be your closest friends 20 years from now (maybe not in distance, but in heart and mind).  And, the “who” might actually surprise you.  Be careful not to dismiss others.  You’d be amazed at how funny the world works out sometimes.

Keep your faith in God and don’t worry so much about denominations.  Follow your heart.  You have some great guides to help you along the way.

You’ll be spending this summer abroad in Russia.  Enjoy it, takes lots of pictures and mail postcards home to friends and family.  That last one is really important.  Soak in the history and the culture.  Fully appreciate the amazing opportunity.  Oh, and be careful what you eat.  Um, yeah, the healthcare in Russia isn’t all that great, even in 1995, so try to avoid things that might make you sick.  No, really.  Avoid them.  Like the plague.  You’ll thank me later.  Promise.

Alright, the real reason for this letter.  College.  We both know you’re a total nerd.  There’s no denying it.  Everybody knows it.  Embrace it.  There is nothing wrong with being intelligent.  NOTHING.  But, get a life.  Go out.  Experience things (don’t be stupid though).  Try to figure out what interests you and go for it.  Develop a passion for something.  Anything (legal and non-alcoholic, please).  Don’t worry about when or why or how.  Just find something you love and aim high.  Go on college tours.  Really.  Take weekends to drive (or take the train – Dad will love that) to visit various colleges that interest you.  Don’t worry about who is going where or anything like that.  Just find a campus that suits you.  No matter what, don’t quit.  Even if you have no idea what you want to do, stay in school and major in something.  Anything.  Just finish.  That little piece of paper will open so many doors for you.   Oooooh.  While you’re in college, study abroad.  It doesn’t really matter where.  Just do it.  And, consider an internship as an upperclassman.  Networking is crucial and you can’t start too early.  Think of it as linking to your future (there is a pun there, but you won’t understand it for many, many years).

Above all…don’t rush.  Don’t rush growing up and becoming an adult.  It will happen soon enough and you can’t go back.

You, the grown-up, boring, 35-year-old mom of three (yes 3!!!)


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