this post was published in Letters of Love
I hope this letter finds you alive—all senses and engines burnings—and well. It might find you waiting in line at the Christmas market. It might find you taking a break from sitting in the sun. It might find you in your most uncomfortable outfit, a little too full of life to start cleaning the kitchen and a little too empty now that everyone’s gone. It might find you in the light, in the dark, in the back of his favourite café, in foreign places, in your parents’ car, in between her cream-coloured pillows, before, after, in the midst of chaos—only, I hope, not too late.
This letter comes to share with you some things that I know to be true, in the naive hope that you won’t mind me not always leading by example. I believe that love, even the love radiating from a stranger’s writings, is better than no love at all, and this is my way of passing it on. Love, as you know, is the only mechanism that can set in motion both your warmth and your strength, that makes you softer and more confident, that sings you to sleep and prepares you for war in the same voice. So take a deep breath and read on.
Allow yourself to roll life between your fingers and laugh at its nonsense from time to time. You can’t change overnight—we build ourselves up too strong to slip into another skin at the snap of one’s fingers, even if they happen to be our own. No one shows up at your door at three in the morning just to tell you they don’t love you anymore. If they do, you know they’re lying. People are very bad actors. They never live up to your expectations. Never fill yourself to the brim. Always leave room for more. Take only what is necessary. Take only what you love. Experiences stay in you, you go out of them. The sweetness and danger of losing control are grossly underestimated.
Safety isn’t always a friend. Safety believes that life around you exists only to be contemplated in silence. Don’t enjoy it, don’t touch it, don’t use it, or fear will grow on you like bacteria. Let yourself to know that you’ve made it this far, that you’re sorted, that you got to heaven. That you’re as good as dead. (And it’s completely wrong.) New energy isn’t exhausting. Still waiting is. When you’re on the run, the intensity feels light. You remember the indecision like a long stormy night, and that’s just not poetic anymore.
If they make you their secret hideaway and you draw the curtains and let the sun in, they’ll leave. Not everyone wants your helping hand. Some just want your shoulder. None of your tricks can set them free, because freedom isn’t given, it’s taken. You can learn so much from your most badass version. The things you’ve filled with feelings will always tip the balance in their favour. Allow the new thing to show you a few tricks before you reject it. Put your heart into it, but don’t forget to take it back at the end of the day. Your fire is the most valuable thing you’ll ever have. Don’t give it away to others. No one needs it.
Sometimes you get so excited about the possibility of having found someone beautiful that you risk inventing miles of them. Don’t. If you fill in all their blanks with imaginary cotton candy, by the end of the day you won’t know who’s right and who’s wrong because you won’t know what’s real and what’s not. Make silhouettes out of spilled ink and pass them on, if you must. As far as I know, writing is the most important endurance strategy for surviving in the wilderness of the empty soul. Whoever you are, I want you to know that I mean everything I say, even if I struggle with some of it. I am still learning the same things you, for I am a little bit like you, too.