The Past Is Writing Letters to the Present

Lately, I have had a growing interest in the exploration of my roots, my past, and the road that has been walked by those whose faces I’ve never seen. It started as simple genetic curiosity, wondering where my family had been…and where it was most likely going. But it evolved into a headfirst obituary deep dive. Who were these people? How did they live? What pieces of the past were they passing down through the generations?

Based on a Yahtzee cup shake and toss, I was given a randomized mix of cells on a blank sheet of source code. A hand with tightly crossed fingers let the dice fly, and with that action, a tiny carbon being with multiple lifetimes’ worth of history behind him was let loose on the planet.

But how much of our journey is dictated by these former lives, specific hardwiring, and our core composition? Will the decisions we make and the path we think we have the power to choose ever be able to supersede a wet-inked blueprint just waiting for us to finish our scripted sentences while monitoring that straight-line slide from point A to point B?

I can’t remember my father’s face.

I keep trying to visualize what he looked like, especially at my age, but there’s a dark spot in my mind and I can’t complete the picture. I think that’s probably what pushed me onto this tangent. Then, as always, that small spark ignited an obsessive interest in exceptionally complex scientific information that led me down rabbit hole after rabbit hole. Ultimately, all I learned was that I probably need someone on standby with a mental lasso to save me from myself and pull me back into focus.

Still, the notion that we are all just pieces of the present delivering messages from the past is a fascinating and baffling concept. It goes beyond simply having your “grandpa’s eyes.” When you frame your entire existence in the context of human beings as living, breathing time capsules, it brings a greater sense of purpose and responsibility into focus.

So honor the past by making the most of the present…especially if you’re the last of your line.

Adolescence Interrupted

3 thoughts on “The Past Is Writing Letters to the Present”

  1. Wise words! I love the name of your article ‘The past is writing letters to the present’ Have you started researching your family tree? I got more interested in my family history recently when I scanned a large amount of old photos of my dads side and turned them into a photo book for him, he was delighted!


    1. No. I haven’t explored my family tree, but that would be an interesting endeavor. I’m sure I’d find some surprises hidden between the folds! Thanks for the comment, and I’m glad to hear that your dad appreciated the gesture. Sounds like a wonderful gift.


  2. sometimes your blog posts leave me speechless for a minute – this was one of them. Do you have any pictures of your father? I am finding that family can give great insight into oneself if I pay close attention. Sometimes for good, sometimes not – but it’s truly eye opening. At times thinking you need to forcefully pull things into a different direction…I don’t know if that makes sense. If only we could go back in time and talk to our ancestors and hear their thoughts on things and their hopes and dreams.


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