“Life doesn’t discriminate between the sinners and the saints. It takes and it takes and it takes…” — Hamilton: An American Musical
I have been meaning to write to you for quite some time now. And every time I have tried, I could not write anything. All I could do was to stare at the blank screen of my laptop for what seemed like an eternity. Every single time. This incapability to write this letter did not stem from a loss of words or ideas or even complaints. Instead, it was the result of the fact that there was always so much to write to you. So many ideas and complaints and whatnots. It all just made me feel overwhelmed and I shut my laptop. You make me feel overwhelmed with emotions. So let me just start by saying this: Life, you are overwhelming and terrifying!
You may laugh at me and think what does a 23-year old guy have to say to you. And you would be quite right maybe. After all, considering nothing terrible happens, I still have a long winding way to go. Yet, here I am. Writing a letter directly addressed to you. But please, Life, don’t consider this a letter of rant or complaints. It is far from that. You see, Life, despite all your shortcomings and randomness, I actually quite like you.
In the 23 years that I have known you, a lot has changed. I have changed and the people around me have changed. In fact, the entire world has changed and so have you. You have changed like seasons but instead of four, there are an unending number of seasons of you. You bring sorrow like winters and joy like spring. You bring pain and anxiety. You bring smiles and contentment. And you change every day. In fact, sometimes you change from one season to another within a day. Life, you are change.
You have also given me excruciating pain and loss. The loss of loved ones and the pain of heartbreak. I can’t forgive you for the loss nor for the pain. Since both felt like…I still don’t know. There is no other type of pain to compare it to. It certainly hurts a lot more than physical pain. It’s the kind of pain you feel deep in your heart and you have no idea how to fix it. How to soothe that pain. It just pains and it keeps hurting for days and months and years and you just cry and hope that someday it will go away. But it never quite goes away. It’s suffering in perpetuity. Life, you are suffering.
When I wake up every morning and have to decide what to do that day, I find it difficult to pick a task. There are always so many options. Every minute of every day, I am supposed to make a choice. And I keep doing that. Small choices like what kind of coffee to order and large choices like what career to pick. Which socks to wear and what to put in my resume. Life, you are choices.
When I see my niece or nephews, I feel happy. Just seeing their innocent smiles gives me joy and soothes my heart. It makes me realize how beautiful life is. When I see my mom or dad, I feel happy. Talking about stupid things with my brother and cousins makes me happy. Reading a great book gives me joy. Getting an assignment done that I have been struggling with for days gives me relief. Just taking a walk outside and seeing all the trees and buildings and people and animals makes me feel how amazing everything is. Life, you are beautiful.
Life, you are so many things all at once and you make me feel so many things all at once. You are the smile of a child and the rage of an adult. You are the pain of a burn and the joy of love. You make me feel happy and sad and nervous and anxious and scared and angry and so many other emotions I can’t even describe. Even then, I feel that I love you. I love not just the happy parts of you but even the sad parts of you. Everything that you have ever done has made me the person I am today. And everything that you will do will make me a better person, hopefully. Life, you are the blank canvas that I get to paint on every day. And you are as beautiful as the greatest paintings that have ever been painted. Life, you are everything, all at once.
Life, you are human.
Just a 23-year old.
“And we keep living anyway. We rise and we fall and we break and we make our mistakes.” — Hamilton: An American Musical