Dear Alice,
Hey there, champ! How are you hanging in there? I’m going to try and use little words for you, even though I am aware you read at a sixth grade level (kudos on that). I’ve got a few tips to pass along, because hindsight is 20/20 and believe me—we have a lot of it.

1. You know what’s awesome? Math! Oh man! Be good at that. You’re going to need it to help get yourself out of the massive amount of credit card debt you have later on!

2. Also: Study all the time. I know playing Top Gun in the yard with the neighbour boy (stay away from that jerkwad—trust me) seems like a good use of time, but we are dumb. We just sat through an election season politely nodding along as people talked about issues we have zero comprehension of. So let’s stay inside and read.

3. Don’t kiss Kyle on the jungle gym. He’s going to tell everybody. Plus he’s going to taste like tuna salad and try to slip you the tongue. It’s not worth it.

4. Quit spending your paper route money on candy, for two reasons:

a. We have what is known as a “booty.” Not the pirate kind, but the kind that Mom tells us we’re going to have every time we eat ice cream.

b. See the above bit about our aforementioned insurmountable debt.

5. I regret that we never took karate, so if you could start doing that I’d be very appreciative. Toned arms and thighs don’t seem like a big deal to you now, but trust me—they are all we want later.

6. Mandy next door is a terrible, terrible person. She pretends she’s your best friend, and then she’s cruel to you. She hurts your feelings.  She makes you feel small and like you don’t matter. A lot of people will hurt you intentionally. I’m really sorry to tell you that that’s going to happen, and I feel worse telling you that we’re going to let it happen all the time. You don’t deserve that. No matter what anybody ever tells you, you are worthwhile. You deserve love. That is the single hardest thing you will ever learn, and it’s going to take you way too long to learn.

7. Oh, and you’re getting the chicken pox this summer. It’s going to suuuuuuuck.

Merry Christmas! Hug Grandpa for me, and (spoiler alert!) enjoy the dope-as-fuck oversized stuffed Simba doll you’re getting from Santa.

Love (really),
Future Alice