The View From The Outside #1

Courage

Hey, P.

You wrote me a letter once. 10 pages long.

Today I read it again. It was a younger you that wrote it: a you with a certain type of belief. A you that wanted to understand the misunderstood, to negotiate the unreasonable. A you that did not know how to explain the certain requirements you had in a relationship that you were a part of, but didn’t care. You put some words on paper literally, and let your heart do the articulation, what-so-ever it may look like at the end of it.

It’s wholly adorable, and a revelation. But we sometimes overlook these things as examples of stupidity, or immaturity, in retrospect. The tone you’ve written it in can probably be cause for embarrassment, or even total disagreement with a set of values you seem to be stating in it versus the ones you believe in today.

However, at that moment, after reading it after so many years, something new dawned on me. With objectivity, I derived new meaning from the same. One of the things it does is hint at the courage it might have required you to confront me with these ideas considering the eclectic, demanding person I might have seemed, or even been. It talks about discovering a need to understand a problem, talk, council each other, and resolve disagreements without compromise. This is one of my first memories of you doing this, since which you have grown to be only more fierce, and I do mean it in a good, needed way.

The honest truth is, and this is the funny part: I did not go looking for this letter. This letter stuck out of a small grey zipper that I used to supposedly keep important papers back in college, in-between books and what-not. I opened it, and I realised what it was, and I paused contemplating whether or not to read it, lest it cause loss of strength or even the general sense of short-lived positivity that I manage to hold up. I decided I’d put it in my cupboard. I finished up that pile, got some sleep, and once awake, I saw it in my cupboard staring at me. I latched my door, and lay down on a sofa and read it.

I remember telling you last year I wanted to write to you about certain things. You see, writing is hard for me, not because I’m bad at it, but more so because I imagine writing to need class: a certain panache. And a sense of cohesiveness. Else it’s failure in articulation, which means it’s not worth doing just then. This sounds irritatingly similar to this philosophy I’ve maintained, that today I so dislike: ‘the need to do something with full fanfare; the best possible way; or not do it yet: this idea of the ideal moment.’

But this is it. That letter just hit me. You will never be as pure and direct as you were that day, but the urge for communicating and the clarity within those 20-year-old’s blurred words triggered an urge to communicate to you so strong. I write, not to tell you to be or do anything, Peggy. I write so that you may stroll unafraid into the mind of the person you once declared yours in a letter, proudly. A person you believed would understand the intent; the reason for those words.

Today seems a good day as any if I had to find the courage, to start; and finding that letter cannot be more of a sign.