A Letter to My Past Self—A Blog by FY Maddie McLaughlin

Dear Maddie from the past,

            Great news! As your future self can now confirm, everything you so fervently wished for has come true. Keep the faith, because before you know it, you’ll be opening your own private, high-end morgue and breeding mountain pygmy possums on the side. In addition, as a producer of The Bachelor, you’ll be chauffeured around in a stretch limo driven by Kim Kardashian.

APRIL FOOLS!!!!! Here’s the real one:

Dear Maddie from the past,

            I’m writing to you because I know you are at a particularly difficult stage of your young life; you are currently standing at a significant crossroads, unsure of the correct path to take. Well, I have some bad news: there is no path. The secret is that in order to get where you want to go, you must be willing to grab a machete and hack your way through the underbrush, creating your own path in the process. The good news is that sports are not gone from your life forever. Although athletics or physical activity of any kind may seem utterly impossible right now given your illness, you will play sports again. And I know what your next train of thought is: it’s too late. No! Don’t allow your fear of failure or inadequacy prevent you from reaching for the things you want most out of life.  Remember that we rarely regret the things we did do, but rather we almost always regret the things we didn’t do.

            With this in mind, keep taking those herbal supplements and drinking those green smoothies (that will continue into college; you have a bright relationship with vegetables ahead of you), and trust that no matter how confusing, painful, and wholly unfair it may seem, everything is happening as it should. Trust that you will recover, you will play volleyball again, you will run again, and you will live in the fullest sense of that word again. Furthermore, despite your incessant fretting, you will end up at a beautiful college with the distinct privilege of playing on an even more beautiful volleyball team. So do your best to live each day with gratitude, humor, and a deep sense of purpose. Treat each day like the unique gift it is, and understand that in the end, there is no such thing as failure. There is only experience.

            Yours (literally),

                                    Maddie from the future

P.S. When your coach assigns you a blog entry, please don’t wait until the last minute to do it…

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