Do…

Do everything that scares you. Take the chance to learn how to ski in the Alps, bike across the US by yourself, apply for jobs in countries that you can’t place on the map, learn a new language, learn a new alphabet, live with the Siberian nomads who collect the quivet that the muskox leaves behind on the low bushes it passes.

Do everything possible.

Do not wait for the perfect moment, do not wait until you are ready. Throw yourself forward into challenges and adventures as if they were the soft brown eyes of the boy you kissed in the third grade.

Do not take your spell checker seriously. It doesn’t know you, it doesn’t understand you.

Do not hesitate! Move to where you feel welcome, move to where you are an outsider but where the view makes up for the hate. Move to the edge of the world and ignore people while cuddling a dog, or a raccoon, or a moose. Whatever scares you most, whatever lives at the edge of your world.

Open your windows wide and let the cat come in!

Trust yourself, know yourself, understand yourself. Focus on your strengths, accept your weaknesses. Know that you will never be the perfect house husband and feel liberated in letting your wife fix the truck! Know that you will never be the perfect housewife and focus on your career! Do what makes you happy.

Do things that scare other people.

Do not care what people think.

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Never stop laughing, learning and teaching. There are new worlds to discover from your armchair and you have your own world with your own stories. Tell them.

Let us learn from your mistakes, as you learn from ours. Let us tell you that everything will be alright, which you knew all along. Let us help you, in the indescribable ways that online friendships do.

Be good to yourself. Be happy with your weight, with your height, with your thousands of freckles that cascade like the ocean’s waves down your back. Do not let anyone pull you down. You do not owe them, you do not have to change yourself for them.

Do not be afraid of change, or chaos, embrace both as a time to learn more about yourself. Accept that change is inevitable and do it for yourself – not for the cute red-headed girl next door who likes musicians.

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Be happy.

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