NEW CASTLE — Dear Josh,
Hello, I know you don’t know me, or at least you think you don’t. We are very much alike and someday we will share many of the same beliefs and ideas. I have many years on you, but at your tender age of 12, I have some helpful advice for you.
Please hear me out, and don’t turn a deaf ear to my words. I can offer you some life lessons that may help to ease the heartache that I know will ultimately befall you. You have a big heart, but girls and your love of them will be your biggest stumbling block in your life. Contrary to your undying creativity, which will push you forward in life, girls and your relationships with them are your personal kryptonite.
In a few years, you will have a very special girlfriend. The two of you will share some special times, but it will eventually come to an end. Please understand that in the following weeks, when she attempts suicide, it is not your fault. She ultimately grows into a beautiful, upstanding woman and has a wonderful family. Pick yourself up and dust yourself off, because there are plenty of other extraordinary people who will cross your path.
The girl who stalks you, and even follows you across several states, is harmless. In spite of her unconventional ways and all the gifts, she simply has a big heart and truly cares for you.
There will also be the girl from junior high and high school that your teacher said you would end up with. You will eventually fulfill your teenage crush as the two of you start dating while going to college in Pittsburgh. She will also depart from your life, but you will hold a part in your heart for her as “the one who got away.”
You will also find your way out west and fall very ill. Do not fear as you stand in the airport promising your girlfriend that you will return, knowing in your heart that you never will be back. She will be fine, and was not the right one for you. Pick up the ticket your dad sent for you, and head home to heal. Yes, I know it’s tough.
Once you return home and jump back into the work force, you will work many jobs, but these are building you and preparing you for the more meaningful and fulfilling work. In the midst of one of these menial jobs, you will fall for a woman named after a month of the year. You will be quite happy together until she tears your heart out. You will experience real heartbreak from this failed relationship. The excruciating pain will subside, and things will get better. I promise.
Channel this energy into your creative endeavors. Embrace the ability you have. You have a mind that races with ideas and churns out concepts faster than you can turn them into tangible material. Embrace this — it is your power.
Your heart is big and your willingness to share with others will open so many doors for us ... er, I mean you. However, don't let the lack of reciprocation from those you share with cause you to become callused or harden your heart. Dwell in your carefree attitude and grasp the small things that will someday mean so much.
You'll stumble and fall many times. You will lose jobs, cars, and even houses, but believe me when I tell you that just around those bends are even bigger and better things.
You will migrate through several other relationships, including one that results in a marriage and the devastating loss of a child. It will hurt and be very hard, but don't blame the women in these situations as they are hurting, too.
Eventually, you will meet a woman who changes and enhances your life from top to bottom. You will prepare to spend your life together and experience some bumps in the road. Hold fast to this woman, as she will be the mother of your daughter and she will unquestionably complete you. The two of you will grow old together, build an empire and impact the world.
I know you are scoffing in disbelief at the tales I am telling you. You probably don’t believe a word I have said.
I tell you that I wish somebody would have written a letter like this to me, but, in fact, I am doing just that. I am writing to me. I am the old and gray version of you. I sit on the opposite side of our youth and wish you the best. I also offer you these tidbits: Wear your seatbelt on Jan. 8, 2010. Don't get a Discover card. The Steelers will win the Super Bowl in 2006 and 2009. Buy stock in a little company called Apple.
Aug. 25, 2012