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Isabel Cueto
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To Future Daring, Wild Girls,

My greatest memories so far in life have been experiences that I have had in nature. I will treasure my memories of camping in northern Michigan each summer. The sun beating on my back as we would paddle down the cool, clean waters of the Manistee River. The shade and refuge the green, lush trees provided us when we were so exhausted and couldn’t travel any further. The sandy shores of Lake Michigan. The sunshine reflecting on the clear, blue water. The secret sand dune we discovered down the beach that we would climb every year. Our very own traditions. The stars so bright at night with stories to tell. A shooting star if we were lucky. I’ll never forget how I felt. Like I was powerful and confident and full of joy.

However, there is a big problem. At the current time, we are not being so kind to the earth. Our factories and industry give off emissions that pollute the air. They release toxins and chemicals that pollute waterways and kill plants and animals. Habitats are being destroyed and we are losing biodiversity as things continue to die. The oceans are acidifying because of all the excess carbon in our atmosphere. But some people are making a lot of money and so the destruction continues. I am so fearful that we will continue our current rate of consumption of natural resources until we run the planet into the ground. That we will continue to come up with band-aid solutions for the harms we are creating rather than changing our culture of consumption. That we will not change and we will lose precious nature.

I hope for your future that you too will go on wild adventures and experience nature first hand. That you run freely and shout with all your might because you are strong and you realize it. I hope you will create memories that last a lifetime. I hope that you will love nature and in turn nature will love you back. That you will protect the earth and care for it so that it can continue on and future generations after you can enjoy the wonders that I have enjoyed. I hope you will feel empowered by nature, like you are invincible and can rule the world. Because you can.

I promise to continue this conversation with my friends, family, and anyone I encounter that wants to talk. I promise to make the little adjustments to my lifestyle to live more sustainably. I’ll call my representatives to push for better protection of the environment. I’ll volunteer to clean up and try to restore things we have destroyed. I will continue to educate myself about the issues and I will continue to fight for the earth and for you.

Love,
Isabel

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