At 12-years-old, Taylor Smith wrote a letter for her future self that she sealed in an envelope to be opened 10 years later. When she died suddenly months later, her parents discovered the note that has now gone viral.

Growing up in Johnson City, Tenn., Smith was a precocious tween with the ambition of checking in on her twentysomething self with the wisdom of her youth. “To be opened by Taylor Smith on April 12, 2023 only (unless said otherwise),” read the note on the envelope, which she’d stored in a box in her room.

After Smith died of complications from a bout of pneumonia, her parents discovered the letter. Although they were still grieving from the loss of their young daughter, the parents’ felt pride in reading their daughter’s hopes for her future self and shared the letter on Facebook. Within the letter, Smith checks in on her education, her relationship with her faith, dedication to mission trips – and commitment to watching Doctor Who.

“Have you prayed, worshipped, read the bible, or gone to serve the lord recently? If not, get up and do so now!” Smith wrote to herself. “Now, have you gone on any more mission trips? Have you been out of the country yet? How about on a plane? Is Doctor Who still on the air? If not, what regeneration did they end it with? You should go watch some Doctor Who!”

Smith’s parents – Tim and Mary Ellen – can almost hear their late daughter speaking when they read one of her letters last lines, they said on Today. Her father Tim read his daughter’s words: “It’s been 10 years since I wrote this stuff, stuff has happened good and bad that’s just how life works. And you have to go with it.”

Both Tim and Mary Ellen are happy that by sharing Taylor’s letter, they’ve inspired people all over the world.

– Chelsea Regan

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