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Rachael Teel
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Baby Nephew,

You’re the sweetest munchkin I’ve ever met, and I’m thrilled to be your aunt. Seeing you this weekend, I had an overwhelming desire to keep you safe and make you happy. In the moment, that meant tickles, snuggles, and funny faces — but I know there are far more serious (and important) ways that I can and should be contributing to your wellbeing, particularly when it comes to climate change action.

I work in an environmental field and have a fairly small ecological footprint, taking steps like purchasing wind power, composting food scraps, and selling my car. But I’ve always known that I could be doing more — I just chose not too, focusing instead on how I was doing “enough.”

After spending time with you, with this letter on my mind, I am committed to making the harder changes — for example, using less energy around the house, eating less meat, purchasing carbon offsets, and lobbying my legislators — and continuing to critique my own actions (or lack thereof), rather than patting myself on the back for being “better than most Americans.” I’ve also realized, with a fair amount of trepidation, that I need to have some hard conversations with some of our family members. I gave up trying to talk to them about climate change more than a decade ago, but now that you’re here, I hope they’ll be willing to revisit the subject. It will be challenging for all of us to come to terms with our own selfishness, but I hope that your 1-year-old smile will motivate us to make these important changes. Personally, I think it’s just what I need.

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More Messages to the Future

 

Anya,

All you can do is your best. You can encourage the same in others. You can admit your mistakes and those of your ancestors. You can learn from them, and help however you can. I’ll do the same. I promise.

 

Dear Tomorrow and Dearest Lex, 

I do believe that the collective power of everyone’s best efforts can curb the worst effects of climate change, and provide you with a more stable and secure future.

 

Dear Tomorrow,

We want to let others know about how to fight climate crisis.

 

To the Three most Beautiful Souls I could ever Know,

I promise to keep your Love at the forefront of my every move. I will make personal changes and I will learn more, so that I can contribute to a healthier environment in a meaningful way.

 

I promise to help people! Become more aware!

 

Dear Future,

I will use less plastic.

 

Dear Students,

I imagine at this point we have dropped our addiction to coal, gas, and oil and that our environment has made a turn for the better with the solar, wind, and other unimagined (at this point) alternative energy choices are in place.

 

Dear Bella,

I promise that I shall continue to do all that is within my capabilities to leave you a world where there is fairness and justice.

 

Future Message to Earth,

Hope there will be no more droughts,
And no more pollution with which we fought,
Regarding every human should be taught,
Ensuring that we uniformly follow these thoughts.

 

I want to tell you a story. Yes, another one.

Mankind has always been able to deal with the greatest challenges it’s faced and this will not be the exception. My message to you is: find that passion and give it your all. ‘Till your legs give out.

 

Dear Tomorrow,

I promise to turn old shirts into produce bags.

 

Loved One,

That we all have a role to play no matter how small, we all can make a difference.

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