I’m celebrating my 38th birthday by writing a letter to my younger self. This is the little boy I’m writing to and these are my promises:

Dear Paul,

Happy Birthday, baby boy. Today the world celebrates you!

I write this letter to you on our 38th birthday. Life has been a journey to say the least, little angel, and there’s so much more excitement to come.

Last year I made a commitment to you and to myself to raise you. It came to me in meditation and I had no idea what it meant at the time, but I later discovered it’s called reparenting. It was a feeling I had for years, and previous versions of me ignored that feeling. Previous versions of me just did to you what others did to you—tried to shut you up because your pain seemed far too deep to handle. As I reflect back now I realize you weren’t in pain, but you were trying to help me heal mine. My interpretation of the reparetning process is to honour the things you lacked as a child. I realize what you lacked was a safe space to be you.

Before we continue, it’s important to me to acknowledge our parents. You don’t realize this yet, dear one, but your parents are children too. You’ll see in 20 years when you’ll be the same age as they were when you were born. They also experienced some pretty painful stuff that they never really dealt with, and that comes out (or doesn’t come out) in various ways and it’ll affect you. I’m here now and I will keep you safe. It’s important that you be yourself with them because they need you just as you are.

As you grow, you’ll look for others to save you. This perception will cause you a lot of unnecessary pain and suffering. The boys and men you seek to support and hold you won’t do it the way your heart and soul needs and it will leave you feeling empty and lost. Don’t worry. I got you now and that won’t happen anymore.

When you’re out there in the world, people will try to change you. They’ll say you’re too much, you’re too deep, you’re too feminine, you’re too aggressive, you’re too all-sorts-of-things to exist among them. None of that is true. You’re perfect exactly as you are; you’re just not among the people who know how to support you. You don’t have to worry about that anymore because, I support your joy and will only collaborate with those who support us as we support them. And for the record, there already are so many people who do support you—they’ve been there the whole time.

The world is a beautiful place, and who you are is exactly what this world needs. There are so many things that have happened over the last year that have only happened because of you and everything you are. For starters, baby boy you are brave! I’ve experienced so much this year because of your bravery. I walked away from all I knew to be safe, to venture into the unknown to see what I could find. We’ve only scratched the surface, but there’s so much more out there and your curiosity is driving us to discover more. There are two things I really want to highlight from the last year that wouldn’t have happened if it wasn’t for your bravery:

  • walking away from one-sided relationships (quick lesson I’ll share now to save you 34 years of grief: if it’s one-sided, it’s not a relationship, it’s a transaction.) The world suddenly became much more joyful as we began collaborating with more heart-centered people willing to share and receive with you
  • attending a men’s retreat with 20 straight men being the only gay man there. Baby boy, if it wasn’t for your bravery I would have never even considered walking into this situation, let alone even think about it.
  • making the decision to honour the calling of our heart. More and more this one is taking us on a wild adventure, and it’s time you navigate this one. I’ll take care of the technical stuff, you just point in the direction!

Paul, you have this gift of lighting up the world. Just by being your joyful, brave, and curious self, people’s energy shifts. Be you without any hesitation and it will help people in ways you can’t even imagine. At one point this idea that you “have to be more serious” will come into your mind and if you identify with it, it will crush you. And although you’re not a “serious” guy, there is one thing you take seriously, and that’s joy! The second you feel it’s missing, simply return to your heart and you’ll be right there.

Your creativity and imagination are infinite. Remember to stay connected to your heart at all times because that’s the source. When you’re connected and aligned, some pretty amazing things happen … and boy are we gonna need them on our upcoming adventure around the sun this year!

Remember, I’m here now. I’m not trying to shut you up anymore. Now I am here to work with you, not against you. Let’s take everything you are and everything I’ve learned and let’s do some great things together. “Let’s be outspoken, let’s be ridiculous, let’s solve the world’s problems!” Know this, on your birthday baby boy: I got you. I’ll make sure your talents and skills and love are nurtured so they can bless this world and in turn, bless you. I can’t wait to see what amazing things we accomplish together with all the love and joy that is inside of us. Together, we’re gonna make this world such an exciting place to live. Take my hand … I’m just as scared as you are, but I also know we’re unstoppable. We’re gonna make it because we got Love on our side.

Paul xo