Dear 5-year-old Audrey,
Do you know how you want to be a vet? How you wish you could take home every dog you saw and drop not-so-subtle hints to your parents that you wanted a dog of your own? Well, I've got news for you. Things didn't exactly go according to plan. You see, someday soon, you will check a veterinary medicine book out from the library, and the pain on the animal's faces will make you realize that you don't want to be a vet, after all.
Don't worry, though. Everything will work out in the end. You'll get a dog like you've been hoping for, and you'll make a few career changes before settling on something that combines your love for reading and writing. You'll still interact with dogs in a volunteer position, not a paid one. Every time you visit, you can get dogs out of their kennels, if only for a few minutes, bathe them, give them attention, and give them the love that they deserve. Your heart will break every time you see a potential adopter pass up the bigger, older dogs for the puppies. Puppies need to get adopted too, but it's much easier for them to find a home. There will be one dog you meet, Santana, whose silly antics and affection will warm your heart. If she had gotten along with other dogs, you would have found a way to convince your mom to bring her home with you. For now, you do what you can to spread the word about the dogs that you meet. Every dog that gets adopted feels like a victory, even if you weren't directly involved. So, your life might not have ended as you imagined, but you are still pursuing your passion for caring for animals.
Your 20-year-old self