Why Writing an Email to Myself is One of the Best Things I've Ever Done

Yesterday, I got an email from the past. 

"Dear Future Me," it began. 

My stomach dropped. I had totally forgotten. 

A very sad day in August 2015, two weeks after my dad was diagnosed with terminal cancer, I found a website called FutureMe.Org. It's a free service that allows you to write an email to yourself, and it will store it and send it back to you on your selected date. Thinking it would be cathartic, I wrote down everything I was feeling at that moment, and scheduled it to send to myself on August 11, 2016. 

So yesterday, I got an email from the past. 

"Dear FutureMe,
Today is a weird day. You're having a hard time focusing on one thing. Instead, you're in a million directions: trying to find a wedding photographer, book your caterer, figure out why your puppy won't cuddle with you, find a new apartment AND figure out who they're going to say is A tonight on Pretty Little Liars. You've got a lot on your plate. In the next two months, you're moving, getting married and losing your boss. On top of that, your dad was diagnosed with cancer and you thought it would be a good idea to buy a puppy the day after (hello, rollercoaster!)
I hope when you get this, you (we?) are much happier. I hope your Dad is still alive. If he isn't, I hope you've called him every day and are extremely pleased with your final bit of time together. I hope your wedding was beautiful, and you and your dad walked down the aisle happily and you and Brooks walked away from it totally satisfied. 
I don't know where you (we?) will be a year from now, because everything in life is about to change drastically, but I hope you're happy. If you aren't, remember that there are SO many people that love you. And if you don't like something, change it (as you did in the crazy July/August 2015 when your life was turned upside down). Seriously. Move. (with Brooks and Bacon I hope). Find a new job. Whatever it is you need to do. If there's anything we've learned by now is that life is short. You (we?) can't afford to waste it.
I love you! Love yourself.

I cried for almost an hour when I got this. Not because I was sad, but because I was so proud to see how far I have come in 365 days-- arguably the hardest 365 days of my life. 

I'm proud of myself because everything in that letter has come true since I wrote it (except finding out who "A" is on Pretty Little Liars... lolz). I've moved across the country with our dog. I started my own business. I married the love of my life, and we did walk away from the wedding totally satisfied. My dad isn't alive, but I am totally content with our last moments together. Having this email totally solidified that this entire life-change that I've been writing about for months has been worth it. I finally feel like I'm coming out the other side. 

So, as I said, writing an email to myself is one of the best things I've ever done. Whether you're a writer or not, I suggest you jump on there and give it a shot. You may surprise yourself in a year from now, when you get an email from the future.