This post is part of the A to Z Challenge. Each post will be associated with a letter of the alphabet with the theme ‘Letters to my younger self’.
My dearest 15-year-old me,
There are times, many times when I think that you’re my wisest and most able self. At 15, when all your friends will be transitioning from Barbies to boyfriends, you’ll announce to your classmates that you’ll never marry but instead will travel the world, mistress to millionaires. Needless to say, you’ll shock many but even then, you’ll believe that being conventional is not something you’ll be or pursue.
This seemingly strange worldly view of life will propel you, strangely enough to start a Valentine’s day tradition. While other girls hope and wish on falling stars that they’ll receive a card or a bouquet of red roses with a side of Van Houtens, you’ll spend the day in a bookstore and feed your secret romantic side with a romance book. The first will be an anthology which’ll include a story by Jude Devereux, an author that will become one of your favourites.
And for the next couple of years, you’ll choose to spend your Valentine’s with a romance book, living vicariously through the characters who find their happy ever after rather than chase your own romantic dreams which you suspect will not be as straightforward and full of laughter and love as the characters you’ll read about.
This tradition will hold you until you’re 20 because that’ll be when you’ll meet someone who you’ll believe will be slightly more interesting than the reticent and grumpy lords from your books.
Dear me, you’ll not have many traditions in your life, a practice that’s constant which demonstrates the passing of time. The simple act of buying a book will bring you a secret joy for the time you read the happy stories within it, value that secret joy and do not forsake this Valentine’s tradition.