• Lara Flanagan

Letter to Archie and Rissie – 10 years & 2 months and the start of 2018

Updated: Feb 28, 2020

I have not written you a letter since you were 9 years old; we completely missed 2017.  I know I promised to write you a series of letters to read when you turn 18.  So, I can see you nodding your 18-year-old heads and muttering to yourselves, “Well that is mum for you, she always was a bit full of shite.”

2017 has been and gone and it was a very big year, combine this with the fact that the dawning of a New Year always makes me a little contemplative I wanted to give you one piece of advice that I hope you can carry with you for the rest of your lives.  You are probably well used to me muttering it to you over the years, but I so dearly want you to remember this one thing.

Life is short.    So desperately, desperately short.

I think if there was one simple lesson I would want to give you it would be that.  By knowing how short our lives are, by understanding how fleeting and how precious they are, I hope that as a result, you will live your lives the following way.   Life is short, and honestly, who wants to waste it by giving a fuck about things that simply do not matter?

Life is short so remember …….

What other people think does not matter.

You and you alone are the barometer of your own self-worth.

You will come across people who think you are fabulous, you will also meet people who want to bring you down and others who think you are nothing.  People will tell you your ideas are foolish, or you are as mad as a cut snake.  Alternatively, don’t pursue things just because others tell you to do so.   You control your mind and you alone know what makes you happy and what makes your heart sing with joy.  Life is too short to worry about what other people think.

March to the beat of your own drum.

If you are anything like me, you will be tone deaf and your sense of rhythm will leave a lot to be desired.   I have seen you and your showgirl’s hips Rissie and I think you have music inside of you that only you can hear.  Archie, I have seen you desperately wanting to march in time.  Who cares whether you are marching in time or not? Just remember that you beat your drum, you play the music.  Life is too short to not dance your own dance and sing your own song.

Laugh more than you cry.

Life is short, and through the years you will travel the rollercoaster of highs and lows.  Laughter is food for the soul.  Remember to laugh and to laugh often.  Read books that make you smile, listen to music that touches your heart, watch movies that make you laugh until you cry.  Surround yourself with people who tickle your funny bone.  Laughter is something that can prevail against anything else.  Life is too short not to live it laughing.

Surround yourself with people who are good for your soul.

Sometimes people can take more than they give.  Sometimes people can get a perverse amount of pleasure out of controlling others or putting them down.   Remember that it is better to be alone than be with those who are a black hole when it comes to your emotions.  Surround yourself with friends and family who care, love and laugh.  If at the end of life, you can say that you have a handful of dear friends, then you are truly blessed.  Life is short so only be with people who are good for you.  Value yourself and others will too.

Look at things with your own eyes, not through a screen.

Don’t be one of these people who walk through life with a screen in front of their faces, recording endless moments that they missed entirely.  Looking at something through a screen is not the same as seeing it in real life.  If something is worth looking at, look at it with your own eyes.  If you want to use a screen, fucking google something.  But don’t replace your eyes with a screen.  Life is too short and too bloody beautiful not to be looking directly at it.


I don’t know where the world of the internet and social media will be by the time you turn 18.  I can only imagine the devices, networks, and channels that will be available.  One of the most precious gifts you can give yourself and others is that of communication.  Don’t forget to talk, to send people messages, to pick up the phone and most importantly to listen.  Never pretend that posting something is the same as communicating with someone.  Never think that what anybody puts on social media is real.   Life is too short not to talk and not to listen.  Regardless of what is fucking happening in the world, remember to communicate.

Use the word love.

Tell people that you love them.  (Unless you hate their guts, then don’t tell them you love them.  To do so would be fucking foolish and you have completely missed the point.)  Do things that you love.  Life is too short so love what you do and love who you are with. Surround yourself with things that fill your heart with joy.  Love as much as you can.  Love the world we live in, even when it scares the shit out of you.  Look for moments that are so beautiful that they tear your soul in two.  Love loud and hard and often.  Love.  Life is too short not to.

Be Kind.

Whatever happens please remember to be kind.  What is the point if we can’t be kind?  Kind to others, kind to yourself, kind to this crazy beautiful world we live in.  Life is short so above everything else, remember kindness.

Remember, whatever happens, you will survive.  Life is so short.  So damned short.

Remember that you are loved, and you loved in return.

It is an amazing world we live in.  Grab it with both hands and live to the best of your ability.

With love, joy, laughter, and passion because life is sweet, but it is short.

Life is short.

All my love


#SingleMum #Motherhood #Humour #Hope #MyNotes

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