Be the person who shows up. Be the person who continues to advocate for change because change is possible – it is possible in the most partisan of politics.

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Gretchen Dahlkemper
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Dear Tomorrow,

Today I fought like hell for your future. And I’m tired.

Today the America that I love so much is on the edge. The election is 5 days away and no one knows what is going to happen in just a few short days. Will the American public elect a narcissistic demagogue or will we pick the first female president that will work to combat climate change, fix our crumbling infrastructure and secure our health and safety?

Honestly, I have no idea.

Today you are 7 ½.

I’ve been away from you a lot lately. I feel the weight of being away from you like a heavy sack on my shoulders – and I feel the weight of the world as a second sack thrown on top. Your dad and I no longer live together but he understands exactly how I feel right now. He is there when I break down, when I question how the country that we love so much could be in the position we find ourselves today. Your dad and I, we can’t imagine anyone willing to risk your health and safety. We can’t imagine our leaders trading your health, your joy, your life for the campaign money promised by the biggest polluters.

Reny, it was just 8 years ago, during a very similar campaign season, that we found out we were going to be parents. We weren’t ready – we weren’t ready at all.

We talked through the options – and we are so grateful every day that we had options.

But we had you because we had hope. Hell, the entire country had hope in October of 2008. We had hope that our mixed race family would not only be the new normal but that our family would be accepted, protected, encouraged and ready to contribute without discrimination.

But the last eight years have been painful for our family, for families like ours, for all American families.

The election of President Obama peeled back layers and layers of hate, of racism, of fear. Kids were shot on the street. Communities rose up – only to be beaten down by tear gas, by fear, by pain.

And today that fear, that pain, that anger is on full display. And your world is at risk.

Climate change – the biggest threat to our world – is still being debated as ‘fact’ while your dad’s home in Miami is literally drowning. You ask me on a daily basis why your abuelos are voting for a man that refuses to address the burning of greenhouse gases; why he won’t address a scientific fact that means your children may very likely never see “Mommy’s-ami” where you played on the beach, tasted your first café con leche, and ate pastelitos until your stomach was about to burst.

I don’t know what is going to happen in 5 days my son. And I have no idea what the world will look like in 2050. But I will tell you what I told you the day you asked me how to convince your “Aba’ not to vote for Trump:

“You are good. You are kind. And you know what is right. If there is anyone in this world who can change our current path it is you. Keep showing love and keep fighting for the world you want to see. Be the person who shows up. Be the person who continues to advocate for change because change is possible – it is possible in the most partisan of politics, it is possible with the religious zealots, it is possible in every human being. Your job is to touch souls that need to be touched – whether they know it or not. You, my son, will affect great change in this world. Keep your head up and keep going. We need you.”

My dear son, tomorrow morning I will wake up and continue fighting for the next week – and for every single day until the day I draw my last breath. You, your sister and your brother, are worth every ounce of my efforts, every breath that I take, every beat of my heart. When your dad and I decided to begin our family we had hope and I hope that you never lose the hope that brought you earthside.

As your mama I hope that you and I will continue to work together every day to ensure a healthier and safer world for you to thrive.

I love you,
Your mama

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More Messages to the Future

 

Dear Tomorrow,

I promise to not waste food and eat locally grown food.

 

Dear Maya,

Maya, my love, I promise to be courageous. I promise that when I face a decision, I will think of how it will impact you and your future. I promise that I’ll also step outside my individual decisions and add my weight to the forces that shift culture and systems.

 

Dear Tomorrow,

I promise I will convince my family to switch their gas appliances to electric.

 

Dear Lalo,

I hope whatever happens, whatever I can’t imagine that you may face, that you will continue to seek light.

 

Dear love,

The world is facing some serious crises right now as Viral pandemic and war situation between Ukraine and Russia.

 

Dear Spike, Loulou and Yoshua,

I’m going to start a campaign to try to convince everybody in the Netherlands to not eat meat one day a week.

 

Filha,

Saiba que enquanto eu tiver vida, minha voz não calará para alertar o mal que estamos fazendo agora para as nossas gerações futuras…

 

dear future people (:

I am writing this message to you guys. When I look outside my window today, I see a beautiful world that others and myself call “home sweet home.” The trees glimmering in warm sunlight, the air stirring a cool breeze, and the water flowing down rivers are parts of our home Mother Earth.

 

Dear Future,

I will use less plastic.

 

Dear Tomorrow,

Don’t use plastic straws!

 

Dear Future Me,

I hope that when we look back on these years,  you’ll see that humanity can be good. That we joined together and fixed it because of we don’t, who will?

 

To my Kids,

I wish you all the best and always make sure that you can be proud of yourself and don’t need status-symbols for feeling nice.

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