My Dear Sister

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Hey, you.  

I truly don’t exaggerate when I say that watching you grow into the bold, spunky, and brilliant 11-year old you are today has been one of the most inspiring phenomenons of my life. Ellie, being your big sister has taught me more than I can possibly express about being a human being. You are a blizzard of dazzling inspiration.

Do you remember that tremendously warm day last year when you came home from school chatting about the dreary state of the garden at your school and your plans to fill it with life? Or the following day when you spent hours designing a flyer to hang on the walls of your elementary school calling on students to join your new garden club?

I do.

Do you remember when you started your lucrative handmade bracelet business? Or when you spent weeks raising money for the Children’s Hunger Fund?

Do you remember a few months after that when, instead of singing or dancing or acting for your school’s talent show, you mimed? You mimed for like five straight minutes and blew everyone away?

I definitely do.

Not only do those memories bring a huge smile to my face, they represent the sparkly and determined person that you are. They represent the vibrancy of a soul that stands firmly upon a wild, free spirit and an endlessly kind heart. You fearlessly chase after what you want and then enjoy the run. You embrace life with your arms open wide and exude a great, mighty, and brilliant light.

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My dear, when you get older there may be forces that try to extinguish your light. They may try to cover it up, put it in a box, or hide its source. When that fails, they may try to redirect it or misinterpret it. They may whisper lies and false promises so that you turn off the light yourself.

In those moments, remember that you are a masterpiece. You are a marvelous blaze of joy and inexhaustible magic. You’re in the first few chapters of one of the coolest stories in the book. Keep writing, even when the obstacles abound and the whispers turn into shouts. I know how fearless you are. I see it in the way you stand up for yourself and for others around you. I see it in the way you love people openly and wholeheartedly. Pour your heart into the people and the things you love, even when it makes you vulnerable because that’s when amazing things happen.

Chase after your dreams. Embark on that great adventure. Dance to your favorite song, even when it’s maybe only playing in your head. You are totally allowed.

Don’t give up and never stop miming at the talent show.

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This is one of a series of posts we have been doing of letters to the next generation -- whether that is our children, future children, nieces, nephews, siblings or our students. Part of advocating for justice is teaching the next generation why people are inherently valuable and important. We hope that this series inspires you to share the fight for justice with the children in your life that you influence. Thank you for doing your part to make this world a better place for the next generation to grow up in.

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About the Author

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Torie Pfau is a tiny person with big dreams. She is in her freshman year of college and is excited about where this new adventure will lead. She loves telling stories, trying new recipes, and exploring the world.