E is for e-mail.

I remember signing up for my first email account during college - I'm guessing it was 1998ish? I used the name "chaquita77" because my best friend in high school used to call me "chaquita." I still have that email address but hardly ever check it anymore because it is so spammed. However, I got curious about the first email that was in that inbox. Apparently I used to be *much* better at cleaning out my inbox, because the very first one is from 1999 - and it is something I forwarded to myself to keep! I used to have this printed out in my little office at my college job and then again in my first classroom. I don't know who the original author was - I remember coming across it on some website and loving it. As I re-read it, I realize that I still love it.

I'm actually glad that I stopped deleting emails - I just spent about an hour reading emails from 10-11 years ago and remembering the details like they were yesterday. The boy drama (I had lots), the plans being made, where my friends were, who they were... if you collect your emails like I do, you should go back and read them. It almost* made me wistful of being in my early 20s. *ALMOST.

But anyway, without any further adieu, here is the first email that currently exists from my first email account. Sent to me by myself on Thursday, July 22, 1999:

The Important Things

Sometimes people come into your life and you know right away that they were meant to be there, to serve some sort of purpose, teach you a lesson, or to help you figure out who you are or who you want to become.

You never know who these people may be (possibly your roommate, neighbor, professor, long lost friend, lover, or even a complete stranger), but when you lock eyes with them, you know at that very moment they will affect your life in some profound way.

Sometimes things happen to you that may seem horrible, painful, and unfair at first, but in reflection you find that without overcoming those obstacles you would have never realized your potential, strength, willpower, or heart.

Everything happens for a reason. Nothing happens by chance or by means of good luck. Illness, injury, love, lost moments of true greatness, and sheer stupidity all occur to test the limits of your soul. Without these small tests, whatever they may be, life would be like a smoothly paved, straight, flat road to nowhere. It would be safe and comfortable, but dull and utterly pointless.

The people you meet who affect your life, and the success and downfalls you experience, help to create who you are and who you become. Even the bad experiences can be learned from. In fact, they are probably the most poignant and important ones.

If someone hurts you, betrays you, or breaks your heart forgive them, for they have helped you learn about trust and the importance of being cautious to whom you open your heart.

If someone loves you, love them back unconditionally, not only because they love you, but because in a way, they are teaching you to love and how to open your heart and eyes to things.

Make every day count. Appreciate every moment and take from those moments everything that you possibly can for you may never be able to experience it again. Talk to people that you have never talked to before, and actually listen.

Let yourself fall in love, break free, and set your sights high. Hold your head up because you have every right to. Tell yourself you are a great individual and believe in yourself, for if you don't believe in yourself, it will be hard for others to believe in you. You can make of your life anything you wish. Create your own life and then go out and live it with absolutely no regrets.

Most importantly, if you love someone tell him or her, for you never know what tomorrow may have in store. And learn a lesson in life each day that you live! Today is the tomorrow you were worried about yesterday. Was it worth it?


sarahsmile3 said...

That is beautiful. Thanks for sharing. Now I am off to check and see what my first e-mail was.

Cheeseboy said...

Very inspiring email. Glad you kept it.

I love to look at my old emails sometimes. I was such a geek when the internet first started up. Suppose that hasn't changed.