Dear Natasha Bedingfield,
One of the great shames of my life is that your song "Unwritten" moves me. Not "moves" as in being inspired to live life more fully or to move me into the direction of significant action, but "moves" as in I kind of want to dance a little when I hear it. But don't get too excited, I'm easily manipulated.
With that said, however, I need to let you know that the song is full of crap. It would be nice if it were true, especially during the first week of a new year. And, to be sure, we typically approach the beginning of a new year as if we were staring at a blank slate before us. Signs on top of product tables at my place of business read "New Year, New You." Tabula Rasa. The idea that what happened before today doesn't matter tickles our emotions and makes us think we are in total control.
Yet I'm of the belief that even a newborn isn't staring at a blank slate. We all have marks ranging from virtuous to downright dirty, hopeful to absolutely horrifying, scribbled all over the slate of our lives. The sins and blessings of the mothers and fathers, all that jazz.
Today is not where my book begins, but this does not mean I shouldn't live with my arms wide open. I keep them wide open to acknowledge and embrace not just what will become, either by my choice, mere chance, or other circumstances, but also to accept that what was affects what is and what will be. There is no 2007 without 2006. And 2005 will still color this year more than I would like, but my arms will remain wide open.
Natasha Bedingfield, I never believed I would write you a letter, but I felt it was necessary.
Drenching myself in words unspoken, and unwritten,