Dear Emma,

Dear Emma,

I’m going to be blunt. Your suffering isn’t going to end. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news. I know you’ve been through so much already and you haven’t even come to realise the impact that has made. I’m not going to tell you what’s going to happen since it won’t help you understand it at the time. You need to go through everything to arrive at the place you are now. Although part of me wishes I could change your path, I wouldn’t have the understanding and appreciation of life I do. Plus it’ll be a total paradox because if I tell you then you’ll avoid it and then how will I send this letter in the first place? Best to leave things be.

 Although this letter has started dramatically and you may be thinking what is the point of me writing this if I can’t tell you anything, I am coming to a point I want to make. That is, to hold onto yourself. I know you’re desperately lonely at the moment and you’re trying your best to fit in but it’s not going to happen. The longer you try, the harder you fall and you will end up falling. When the moment comes that you start realizing how unhappy you are and how you don’t feel like yourself, you can always stop and find yourself anew. You’ll gather people around you that you can truly connect with and build lasting friendships. You won’t be alone forever.

 (Following on from the last paragraph, you’re now going to be thinking I have just told you something. My retort is that it’s nothing specific and you’re aware of what you’re doing even now. So hush. Remember, I’m you and I can predict what you’re going to think.)

 On a positive note, though you will cringe and wonder why you did so many of the things you did, you always retain the understanding that there can be no regrets. Eventually you’ll be able to shrug things off and look towards the future. Mistakes will be made, then, now and always. Everything you do and everything you go through will make you see that life is for living, not surviving.

The world will try to steer you into a bitter, cynical and twisted place and you may see it that way for a while, even now. The bone disease, the constant bullying and the cancer you’ve just fought will cement that for a while. But every house needs a foundation and yours is an incredibly positive one. You can still see the bright side of life and that will knock down the house negativity has tried to build. People are always amazed at this but it is as natural as breathing.

 One last thing. You may not pick up a pen for a while. Your notebooks will be filled with doodles and half attempted paragraphs that don’t even deserve to be called a first draft. It’s all a part of you hiding and running and trying to change. Always remember that creativity, inspiration and passion can find their way out of the darkness. Yours did.

Good luck and remember to love yourself.


Emma Varney - Photo.jpg

Emma is a coffee addict and she’s cool with that. She loves nothing more than writing day after day and is always annoyed when reality barges in. She is open and honest, not only about her struggles with mental health, but also with being an ‘adult.’