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Katie Foster
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To my children,

I’m only fifteen at the time I write this–2017 has just begun. My bestie (you’ll probably know who I’m talking about) and I have just resolved that we need to do something. Even though we can’t do much, small seeds grow big trees, so perhaps we’ll have more power to do more in the future. For now, all we’re doing is lots of research and online petitions.

Honestly, I feel small. I feel like a statistic. I feel like another 1 in 7,477,616,470+ people, and I am. I feel powerless to save the glaciers, to stop deforestation, to clean the air. I feel like everything that I fear to come is inevitable, impossible to stop. Even if the world is somehow miraculously fixed by the time you are alive, I’ve found a quote I hope can motivate you as it has me. “Most of the things worth doing in the world had been declared impossible before they were done.” Louis D. Brandeis

I don’t know who you are yet, but I’ll tell you right now: I do not believe in the impossible. Anything can be surmounted. I’m going to leave this earth as best as it can be for the next five generations below me, and I’ll teach you to do the same. I’ll let you play in the dirt, untainted by city litter. I’ll let you run in the trees, protected and reserved for the other peoples we forget we’re sharing this planet with. I’ll let you swim in the ocean, because the trash floats have been gathered up, and I’ve discovered a way to recycle them without releasing more and more toxins into the air, and I’ll have devised a new system of consumption that isn’t as linear and infinite as it is now.

That beach will be clean. Those coral reefs will be alive. I’ll hike you up to the glaciers so I can watch you gawk at how unbelievable and irrevocably huge they are, because I’ll have inspired people to build air-cleansing technologies that slow their melting. I’ll know more. All of these things will live to meet you, and your children, and their children, because I want to change the world. I want to change the world because I love the possibility of you.

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