Hello readers. A quick note. This is not a diary entry. Also, this is something I had written a while ago as part of a devised theatre show I was working on. However, since things have been slow and this piece feels relevant I thought it could stand on its own. The show that this is part of might be written and finished one day, but for now I wanted to share something about humanity. Thanks for your support of my creative writing work. -Fostering Creation
I wish you could see me. I wish you knew that I existed and who I am. I wish you could see me as a person. That’s all I am and that’s all I can be. Shouldn’t that be enough? It’s disappointing that it’s not. I’m disappointed in you. You’ve hurt me, and my friends, and everyone in the world. You’ve turned some of the most humane things, like ethnicity and human-interaction, into machines that are not allowed to feel, that are not allowed to think for themselves or be who they were born to be. DON’T COVER ME UP!!!
I’m writing to you today to inform you of the damage you’ve caused. This will blow the hat off your head. So try to hold on. I don’t know if you are aware, but I’m a human being. I’m not a machine. I cannot be defined by my academic status in school. The car I drive will tell you nothing of my character. The clothes I wear are affordable and comfortable. That’s all clothes ever need to be. I am smart, in my own way. I feel more beautiful in my pajamas than I do in a dress and high heels. I don’t know what made you think that men and women have to look a certain way to be beautiful. Who told you that we had to be skinny, tall, muscular, or wear form-fitting clothes to be beautiful? I’d like to see it in writing, this so-called brilliant idea that you have of the not-so-ideal body image. So many good people have been torn apart by the not-so-ideal body image that you have plastered on ever magazine for the last 80 or 90 years. It’s very hard to love myself when I look in the mirror and see a body that doesn’t look like the one I see in magazines and the one that I was led to believe would amplify my identity. Who I am if not a perfect body, right? And about being smart…I’ve grown up believing, thanks to your invisible rules, that “smart” is only for someone who is a stellar academic. I convinced myself that because I was not interested in mathematics, science, history, or geography that I must be stupid. It took so many years to realize that there are many different forms of being smart, just like there are many different ways to be beautiful. There is no, and never has been a “one-size fits all” AND THAT is what makes us beautiful, smart, courageous, brave, bold, hilarious, and human. It makes us human, above all, that no single person could ever be the same as another single person. I don’t know that you understand that. Do you? Do you see how much your ideals and expectations have hurt millions of people. So we run around like chickens with our heads cut off because we are so afraid to look bad, to be different, to be who we are, to be free, to do nothing, to just be because somewhere in our growing up we saw chaos. We saw people that were comfortable conforming so they fit in, but really what they were doing was not fitting in. It was identifying with fear, shame, agony, and disrespect of self for the sake of our reputation and our very fragile egos.
I hope you have received my previous letters. There are important pieces of information that you should grasp. Also, the following statement I am about to write to you will only make sense if you have read my previous letters. Statement. I no longer wish to fit in. I want to stand out because that is fitting in. As I have said before, I am disappointed in you and the way that you have run this country and this world. You will not be my boss anymore. I have decided to turn to a higher power. This Spiritual Entity, this higher power, has many names among various religions, but the name I choose is The Divine. They shall therefore be referred to going forward in this letter as, The Divine, commonly known as God. The Divine is the only single source that can tell me I fit in. I fit in because I am the only unique me that will ever be. I fit in because I have the power to make difference in this world. I look forward to taking on the grand adventure of always remembering to be myself. I love being me! That’s how I want to stand out. That’s how I want to fit in because I fit into myself. However, you have made that desire impossible to achieve. YOU and your freaking minions that seem to whisper in people’s ears every day that they suck, that they have to move faster, that they have to do this better, and bigger, and bolder to be considered a citizen of the world. That has made it impossible to exercise self-love. So thanks for that, you bitch! Society, I want to love you. I want to feel safe with you and I’d like to get along. There’s no reason that I need to hate you, but I blame you for my struggle with myself, for my struggle with my friends, and the difficulty of being human in a world that feels so mechanical.
I don’t expect you to write back. It’s not really what you do. We do not have an equal give-and-take friendship. It’s one sided and that’s okay. You fire things at me and I take it because I want to please you. I want you to love me. I know you think I’m not good enough so I try to be good enough for you, but is it enough? When is it going to be enough? How much longer are you going to strain my mental and emotional energy? I don’t want to be political, that’s not the purpose of my letters. However, I will make one political statement to make a point about what you’ve done…I think, from my own personal observation, that the issues around guns laws and mass shootings need to be reevaluated. I believe that if you helped us feel like people, and humans that had valid voices, feelings, thoughts, and were good enough in the bodies we live in, then the shootings would decrease. Why, you might ask? Well, because we would not need to feel like we have to make a huge, wonderful explosion to be seen and listened to. It’s a huge cry for help when a story comes out about a mass shooting. People and their mental, emotional, physical, all around health would not suffer so much if you, dear society, helped us love who we are, instead of hate who we are not. We want to love ourselves more, but we find it very hard to do so. We want to love others more, but we feel pressure to be like them, and we lose ourselves in the comparison. So please, help ease the tension and loosen the strain. Open your eyes and see that there is so much more to us then good grades, academics, the right college, the right car, designer clothes, the house we live in, the color of our skin, the amount of friends we have, the challenges we have struggled with, our body-type, or what we do for a living. The only thing that I want to define me is my heart, and my soul, and the contribution I made to the world just because I took a breath and that was enough.