A Letter to Myself, 10 Years Ago

If I tell you, it won’t happen. So the night you have your first panic attack, don’t open this.

Charlamagne Tha God
Published in
5 min readDec 3, 2019


Photo Illustration; Image Source: Roy Rochlin/Getty Images

Dear Charlamagne,

I want to talk to you about what happened to you tonight. You were driving back to Mom’s home in South Carolina. You’ve done it a million times — but this time, out of nowhere, your heart started pounding, and you had to pull over and take some deep breaths.

You think there’s something wrong with your heart. Tomorrow, you’ll go to the doctor, and he’ll tell you that you’re perfectly fine. You’ve got the heart of an athlete. Then he’s going to ask if you’re under any stress.

Tell him the truth: Yeah, you’re stressed. You got fired from a job working with Wendy Williams in the biggest radio market in the world, got your own morning show in Philly but was also fired, and now you’re living back in Moncks Corner, South Carolina, with your girlfriend and young daughter.

He will tell you that last night was a panic attack. And when you give it some thought, you’ll realize it wasn’t the first time.

Hurricane Hugo, 1989. Remember how afraid you were? Even the adults were panicking. When the heart palpitations began, the only thing you could do was hide and try to catch your breath. That was the first panic time, and there would be more.

So, listen to the doctor tomorrow. He’s right. And your panic attacks won’t stop just because you get a new job and start making decent money.

But it’s not just that. There’s more you need to hear. Right now, you are losing faith. You think someone like you has used up all the chances you’re going to get in this world. Inside, you know better, but it’s still getting to you.

That feeling you have inside you, telling you that you’re bigger than the dirt road you’re living on? It’s absolutely correct.

I don’t want to tell you about how all this will play out for us. As Dr. Strange once told Tony Stark, “If I tell you, it won’t happen.” But this letter is going to be a story one day, so I’ll tell you the future anyway.



Charlamagne Tha God
Writer for

Co-host of The Breakfast Club. Author of Shook One.