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A letter from November 26th, 2018

Dear FutureMe,

Why are we afraid of being alone?

I am writing this letter to you at 4 AM in the morning on a chilly Sunday night, and the question above is on my mind. If you recall, I just took a week-long crazy, stupid, "you-must-be-insane", kind of trip to China -- all to meet some random girl we met online. That's a story for another time. Now that the week is done and the girl is gone, I am again feeling lonely as you and I have felt so many times before.

So why are we afraid of being alone?

I remember before, when we were young, being lonely was not a bad thing. It was just a state of being. We had no friends, no parents, and for a while it was completely fine. We found joy in reading and drawing and simple hobbies that only required one. But then, we entered high school, and slowly opened ourselves up to the people around us. We made friends. A lot friends. And these friends became our family for a while. The feeling of loneliness started to disappear, and this was around the time when being alone started feeling like a bad thing.

Remember when we watched and read stories of lone heroes, journeying alone, surviving solitary confinement, and thought: why is this so hard?

I think it was college that really pulled us out of our loneliness and opened us up to the world. We met a beautiful girl, and fell in love for the first time. For the first time, we weren't alone. We lived together with her, and learned from her what a happy and normal existence felt like. It was addicting. It felt like all those years of loneliness was worth it, just to be able to exist in this moment. For five years we were happiest we've ever been, and one day it was over, just as quickly as it had begun.

It was the first time that we started to be truly afraid of being alone.

Ah. I remember now. So that was why we were afraid.

FutureMe, I don't want to be alone, but I don't want to be the kind of person that fears loneliness. I want to be the kind of person that we would have looked up to in our youth, the kind of person that we can still be in our adulthood. Before we start seeking others help, we should strive to fix ourselves so that we can help others. We had tied all of our happiness, our stability, and our emotional well-being to the back of one person. That must have been hard for her. We may not have her companionship anymore, but we still have our friends, who we must be able to protect in tough times. We can be there for others as others were there for us. This starts with embracing our loneliness and transforming it into something productive.

Thanks for listening FutureMe. I know I've been rambling on for quite a while now, so I'll let you sleep.


PS: If you could send me some lottery ticket numbers, that would be sincerely appreciated.

Sent 12 months to the future, from November 26th, 2018 to 7 months ago

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