Dear Stephen Hawking,
Please, forgive me for interrupting the important thoughts of the most famous physicist alive. There's no reason you should want to hear from me, but I've always felt a special connection, seeing as we were born on the exact same day, January 8, 1942. We arrived far apart. You went to Oxford, England and I touched down in Adelaide, South Australia. I live close by in England now, although we probably won't meet. Before we were born, did we wait on a cloud, chatting together about where we were headed? There's so much we don't know about where we came from.
That's where I direct my efforts. I believe the Supreme Being who created us made us responsible. Every action, every thought, every idle word sets up reactions. When one thinks, that thought makes an impression on the Universal Consciousness. Nothing is lost or done in secret. This ensures the safety of your work.
You've used your wonderful mind in ground-breaking work in physics and cosmology, whereas I have lived a normal life with a working body. I can't begin to understand how hard it must be for you to carry on after your diagnosis of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis at the age of 21. At the same time, I gave birth to my second child, walked everywhere and lived the life of a hippy. Now, artificial joints have replaced my hips and I'm in constant pain. However, I carry on walking, knowing full well how lucky I am to be able to do so when your body is atrophied.
I admire the way you continue working despite your debilitating illness. Your books, A Brief History of Time and The Grand Design have helped to make the fundamental questions of physics accessible to everyone: where did the universe come from? How and why did it begin? Will it come to an end, and if so, how? I haven't read them. I'm glad you can't see my blushes. You probably wonder why I admire you when I know nothing about your theories.
Maybe I'll read them one day. In the meantime, I'm writing novels about the decency and goodness in normal people and how thoughts are real things which influence circumstances. In Still Rock Water, my first book, Liliha inhabits the body of others for brief snatches in time.
But I want to ask you about your voice. I've heard that you use technology to translate your facial movements into speech. That's pretty incredible. I've read it contains a remnant of your original voice print. How could you have been so forward-thinking as to record your voice when you knew you'd lose your ability to move? And, most of all, where does your inner strength come from?
My husband argues that with enough money to pay for all the help you need, life is easy for you. I know that's not so. We're 71 now. I'm just beginning to feel my age—it must be worse for you.
Keep thinking and writing. That will maintain your joy of life. No, I can't say that. What happiness can you feel? Do you gaze at the perfection in nature to lift your spirits? What keeps you going when your body is dead? Perhaps you understand that, deep underneath, we are an individual spirit, using the body for our earthly life—and maybe we'll meet again on that cloud.