Ranie Rafael Santiago
Santa Rosa, Philippines

Illustration by
Zach Hewitt

Dear “I-am-hoping-you’re-rich” me,

As I listen to depressing and morose songs, I hope your taste in music hasn’t changed one bit. Remember Sponge Cola, Callalily, and Eraserheads, as well as Maroon 5, The Maine, and Bob Dylan. Don’t forget Don McLean and Mayday Parade. They are your childhood buddies. Those nights when you thought you were going to kill yourself because of depression... their voices were the ones that kept you going, as well as your dreams.

Ahh, dreams. I hope you’re still trying to fulfill them right now. Right now, “our” dream is to be a successful lawyer with a 2-storey home in the suburbs with an average car that runs smoothly, and a luscious career, all before getting married or the age of 30, whichever comes first. You know that since high school that we’ve planned our life up until we find “the one”, right? I hope you’re not straying away from that path!

If you could reminisce, I’m writing this letter at a very dark time of my life. Mom’s unemployed, we’ve got a lot of debts, and we (which is YOU and I) are thinking about putting our education on hold, just so our siblings could finish theirs without delay. Along with that, we’re still having problems with depression, relationships, and being a subtle douchebag. I really hope we turn out better that we are today. “I” wanna see “me” smiling and happy and contented. If we’re reading this right now, and we are all of those, pat us on the back and smile that “Good-job-we-made-it” smile. You know what we’ve been through. We deserve that smile and pat.

If by now, you still love Philosophy and writing, please try and write a book, or take up your books again and study Philosophy. I really love Philosophy, and I hope we still do by the time we read this. Also, appreciate your parents more! Appreciate your sister even more!! Love your brother way more than you ever did. We both know that we are distant with our family as I write this letter. Nope, don't deny it. You always thought back then that you were the odd man out, the "black sheep" in the family and there were times that you almost believed it, packed your bags, and got away from it all, or worse... I hope you didn't leave them. We both know that family is important to us; that we are both willing to stop pursuing our dreams so that theirs could be fulfilled. We're awesome like that. I really hope we can make it up to them. As George R.R. Martin would put it, "Family. Duty. Honor." (Also, check out if "A Song of Ice and Fire" is done, as well as if HBO's Game of Thrones caught up with the books! If not, go watch the series and read the books nevertheless.)

I’ve come a long way from the boy who still craps his underpants, even though I could already finish Grand Theft Auto V in less than a week. I’m pretty sure we’ve still got a long way ahead of us, especially you. I hear that 25 is really a great year, and yet it’s one of the hardest, considering it’s the time to let go of childhood days, and we both know it’s going to be hard…

Before I finish this heartfelt letter, I just want you to know that right now, I’m an emotional wreck. I’m breaking down every single night, and I can’t help it. I hope that by the time we read this, we’re over with depression, we’re smiling and happy, and we finally have that someone that’ll make us change for the better. I can’t wait to meet you. :)

Also, watch How I Met Your Mother again, and check out your old blog. Time to walk the feels lane again!

Remember this: Just like Neil Patrick Harris, we are LEGEN… Wait for it….

Your biggest fan,