Dear Canada,

Congrats on making it 150 years past Confederation — you don’t look a day over 125! I must admit that even after spending 77.79% of my life with you, Canada, the beauty of crystallized water (more commonly known as snow) falling from the sky never fails to mesmerize me. The vast variety of scenery found across your provinces and territories opens up my eyes to the incredible diversity of life simply within these borders.

In my awe grows gratitude. I am thankful for your four seasons, which display the cycle and renewal of life before our eyes, and colour the landscape with great vibrancy; I am thankful for the maple trees, which treat us with delectable maple candy and sweet maple syrup to pour on our Sunday morning pancakes. What I am most thankful for though, is what truly makes you special, Canada, and that is the diversity of people who gather on your land. Within man-established boundaries, we, of different cultures, ideas, races, and beliefs unite together (surely over Tim Horton’s) on this wide expanse of land.

While we proudly say that we are your citizens, oh Canada, we must not be mistaken in claiming ownership over you. Like the European visitors who were graciously welcomed by the Indigenous peoples onto this land to share resources over 300 years ago, we cannot forget that we too are mere travellers on this land and in this world. Once we internalize this fact, it will surely allow us to be ever more appreciative and grateful for all that you offer us.

May we move forward as a unified nation, shoulder-to-shoulder, protecting and upholding the rights of one another. I hope to see many more years of you, Canada; years of prosperity, generosity, kindness, and love between all of us, together as brothers and sisters in humanity.