Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Future Valerie

My second favorite TV show is How I Met Your Mother. (Don't want to leave you hanging. #1 is Big Bang Theory.) On a recent HIMYM, Marshall finds a letter he had written at age 15 to his future, 30-yr-old self. He was a little disappointed that he hadn't reached the level of fame and fortune his 15-yr-old self had aspired to. It ended with him writing another letter to his future, much older self.

Yesterday, I had lunch with one of my oldest friends, Alison. She surprised me with a couple of old pictures she'd found including this one of us, taken in 2000, age 26:

My first comment and reaction was hers, too: Wow. We look so young. And happy. And rested. (And we had chins and cheekbones.) We both wondered what had happened to us over these past 9 nine years and quickly came to this conclusion: motherhood.

So I want to take a minute and address a letter to future Alison and Valerie, in 2018, age 44:

Girls -

This is past Valerie writing to you. Hope you're both doing well. You look fine. Stop obsessing about how you look. You know, you'll look at a picture of yourselves taken back in 2009 and think how good you looked and wonder what happened. That's fine. It's called living. Don't see bags and wrinkles and gray hair but rather moments and memories. Know each line has a story and hopefully a laugh attached to it. Things are going to have happened over these past nine years - good and bad. Take them in stride as you always have. And cherish this friendship that started way back in 1979. You're both amazing women and have something really special - a going on 40-year friendship. Good for you. Go ahead and take a picture of yourselves now so in nine years, you can look back and think "wow, we looked good in our 40's." Just don't spend too much time looking back because you might miss something ahead in the process.

Signed 2009 Valerie

Valerie & Alison
January 1992