Much like a chameleon, you’ve learned how to fade into each new era of your life seamlessly and with more grace than you realize. This isn’t something that should be in conflict with your ideas of stability, but proof of your admirable dedication to it. Instead of asking yourself why you’ve changed so drastically, ask yourself where you would be if you hadn’t. Forgive yourself for adapting to your environment instead of letting it ruin you. It’s ridiculous to hate what’s been imperative to your development.
It isn’t weak of you to let other people take charge every once in a while. You may have spark and endless green lights but it isn’t your responsibility to always be the leader, or always be the one that knows more. When’s the last time you allowed things to happen without trying your hardest to alter them? Take a walk and leave everything as you find it. Make a decision and commit yourself to it. Skip a rock into the nearest body of water and don’t bother to count how many times it bounces. Let yourself enjoy what flows.
Don’t let yourself get swept up in the joy of summer’s final yawn. It’s okay to enjoy it, to let it wash over you, but beware of any repercussions that you may receive for ignoring your responsibilities. Balance has never been your strong suit, so spend some time figuring out what the right ratio of work to entertainment is. You may prefer swings to balance beams but sometimes it isn’t about how high you can go, sometimes you just need to get from one side to the other. It isn’t boring if it’s necessary.
In the kindest way possible, please know that the misfortune that befalls you isn’t always a personal attack. Sometimes people leave, but that doesn’t mean they are leaving you. Sometimes people will forget history that they’ve shared with those close to them, but that doesn’t mean they are choosing to forget you specifically. The world, thankfully, does not revolve around any singular human being. There isn’t a solid course of action we can take to prevent adversity. We just have to live despite that, as fearlessly as possible.
Stress is an avalanche that likes to bury everything you love without giving it a second thought. You’ve gone on so many search missions, brought out the rescue teams in droves, looking for something warm in the midst of all that cold. Have you ever thought that maybe, instead, you should just keep that which makes you happy close to your chest, instead of scattering it around the perimeter of your understanding? Distance is not always an appropriate safety tactic. You need to learn how to hold on.
You are not a wall that needs a new shade of paint in order to be beautiful. You are not a statue that was never given a mouth. You are not a burden to the people that care about you. You are not swimming without shoreline or sunrise in sight. You are not the reason that things have gone wrong. You are not an untuned guitar or directionless melody. You are not too late. You are not shattered. You are not an ending. You are not standing on the edge of disappointment. You are heard. You are heard. You are heard.
Your attachment to the world is often tied to what’s physical, the things you can press to your chest and keep underneath your pillow. But what happens if you lose those things? How would you react if you woke up on the ground without anything to tie you to memory? It’s dangerous to place too much of your heart in one place, especially if that place is mutable and unreliable. Reevaluate what it is you need to keep and what it is that’s holding you back. It’s never too early to start cleaning out your clutter.
You do not need to light so many fires if all you’re trying to do is make the path a little brighter. There are other ways, other means of traveling, that don’t involve burning your hands or leaving wax inside of your footsteps. Paint a picture of your shadow and mail it to the last person you said “I love you” to. Wait for their response and read it next to a candle. Don’t cry, don’t let yourself be sad over something that isn’t your fault. You are capable of making decisions that benefit everybody involved. Just try it.
It must be tiring, forcing yourself to constantly be the brave one. When’s the last time you were immersed in something beautiful just for your own benefit, rather than for those around you? Focus on your internal needs before constructing your external for the public. It’s okay if you aren’t at your best, or if you’re struggling to remember why you’ve chosen certain pathways. Nobody is going to think less of you if you prioritize your needs. Care for yourself by coming to terms with the person you are.
Your patience is a wound that you refuse to bandage because if you did so, you’d have to acknowledge a lot of things. Like just how long you’ve been waiting for people to soften, for your circumstances to bloom, for your reflection to mirror the sense of self you carry. There is a difference between tolerance and allowing the world to take advantage of you. Patience is a virtue, yes, but don’t let it prevent you from soaring through the countryside and city lights with your windows down and the music loud.
Inhale. Your heart is still here, still beating, despite all that it’s endured and isn’t that in itself a reason to be happy? A reason to call all of your friends and tell them that yes, it hurts, but I’m going to be okay? Take yourself out on a date, surround yourself in pink, and treat yourself better than you think you deserve. Remember that love isn’t always going to be something that prevents you from breathing or calls you unworthy. Please hold onto hope, and it’s unrecognizable yet beautiful constellations. Exhale.
Don’t let your fear of confrontation prevent you from asking for help, or being honest about what you can and cannot handle. It’s hypocritical to always remind your friends of the power of their voices and then refuse to use your own. Turn on a song that understands you and sing along to it with the volume maxed out and your hands-free of insecurity. Make sure that every stranger you encounter knows that you’re taking on the world. Ask yourself what you want and be honest, brutally honest, when speaking your answer.