Todd shares two letters -- one to his past self and another to himself in the future.
A letter to former me
Dear Former Me,
You don’t realize it yet but one day you will look back on the next 30 years and think of it as time wasted. You have a rough road ahead of you. You're not prepared for what the future is bringing to your door. Your life is going to change in ways you cannot imagine. You will find out that you are not immortal.
The time to change is now
Stop living your life like you have all the time in the world. You don’t! The time to change is now. That is why I am writing this letter.
From this day forward I want you to stop working overtime. It’s only money and the truth is that 30 years from now it won’t make any difference. There are so many things more important than money. Take the time to enjoy life. Take vacations! Always remember that the moments you share with the people you love are the only things that matter.
You can work your whole life telling yourself that one day you will enjoy life only to have the rug pulled out from under you. You are only promised today. Don’t waste another minute. One day all you may have is your regrets. Spend more time with your Grandma and Grampa. They won’t be with you as long as you think they will.
Take care of yourself today
One day you will begin to notice subtle changes. You will begin to have trouble emptying your bladder. It is not normal for a 40 year old to have that kind of a problem. Listen to your body. Don’t ignore the symptoms. Go to the doctor for regular checkups and let them know that you have a history of prostate cancer in your family. Get a PSA test. Eat healthily. Treat your body a little more like a temple and a little less like a smoke-filled tavern.
Doing these things may not change the outcome of your future but they certainly won’t hurt and you may feel better physically and feel better about yourself as a person. See you in 30 years.
A letter to future me
Dear Future Me,
I hope you are alive and well to read this letter. I hope you are smiling remembering the day you wrote it. I hope you realize you are one blessed man.
Have they cured prostate cancer yet? I hope they have. This disease has taken far to many fathers, sons, and grandfathers away from their loved ones. Do you remember when you were 43 years old and promised your bride 30 years? You better not have broken your promise.
I hope we still look good at 75. Do you still believe that cancer was the best thing that ever happened to you? Are you in pain? Is it hard to manage day-to-day life challenges? Can you still do all the things you enjoy?
Unknown path ahead
I worry about the future sometimes. I wish you could write me a letter to tell me everything is okay. I hope you are still as happy as you are at this moment. I hope you are still thankful for your many blessings! I hope to see you in another 20 years.
Until then I will continue to do my best so that in twenty years you can look back and be proud of yourself for being who you are and the journey of your life.
Have you made personal connections through your journey with prostate cancer?