Day 28: A Letter To A Friend I Haven’t Met Yet

Hi,

Image by Christopher Spiewak

I know we haven’t met yet, but I’m just going to write this to you as if I had known you forever. I hope you don’t mind but I have so many things I want to share with you, and to be perfectly honest if I had to stick within the traditional lines of friendship – well, it would take forever and there is no way I can wait that long! So, I guess that’s the first thing you have learned about me, I lack patience.

Another thing you will discover pretty fast is that I tend to jump right into the deep end, I love chocolate and I often have a highly inappropriate sense of humor, there’s probably lot’s of other stuff, but that’s what’s popped into my mind just now.

So, here’s where I  do that whole jumping into the deep end thing.

I hear that things haven’t exactly been going according to plan in your life, you know those plans we make when we are 8 years old and  playing with our Barbies or Cabbage Patch Kids? Did you have a Cabbage Patch Kid? Personally I preferred my My Child but that’s not important right now. What I was saying about ‘the plan’ is, that we only ever saw good things: a wonderful man, a beautiful wedding, noisily pushing out babies like they did on TV… It never enters into our mind that ‘the plan’ can make a major left turn and lead us along a path we never imagined. Yet here you are, in a place that you never pictured yourself, dealing with issues you really have no clue how to address. Perhaps have never felt so alone in your life, please don’t read that the wrong way, I know that you are surrounded by people who love you, people who care and are devoted to you in the closest way possible. But I figure, if I were in your shoes, there would be so many things floating (or bashing – which is more likely the case) around in my head – things that I couldn’t talk to any of those people about, so what do I do with them?

I don’t know the answer to that, but heres some stuff I have been thinking about lately instead.
Have you ever noticed how many people refer to hard times in life as storms? Heaps right? I think greeting card companies have made a fortune off that analogy! So, here are some of my own thoughts about storms:

  • Storms aren’t all bad – Sure they whip things around, they make a bit of a mess, but they always serve a purpose, even if we don’t know what that purpose is.
    I was in Beijing in 2007 and the smog got so bad at one point you couldn’t see more than 500m down the road, then there was this huge thunder storm, the kind that flash and rumble all night, while a steady deluge just buckets from the sky. Eventually it did end though and for the first time since arriving in China, I saw the blue sky. Yes, I know this is dangerously close to cliché but just bear with me. The storm cleansed a city, I’m sure it made life hard for many people while it rained, but that same rain cleaned the air that everyone breathes. It accomplished something that was completely beyond our ability to do for ourselves.
  • There’s an awful lot of space between raindrops – People don’t drown in the rain! I suppose this is a ‘glass half full/empty senario’. I mean, sure – yes it’s raining and there is no doubt that you are stuck in the middle of the downpour. You are dripping wet and surrounded by muddy puddles. But you aren’t swimming, so you aren’t even close to drowning, the reason you can feel where every drip hits is because of all the places they aren’t hitting! I have to admit, this thought made me want to go and dance in the muddy puddles and feel all the places the rain was missing me!!
  • Storms are a contrast, not a conclusion. They are a shadow that passes over a landscape, they are not the landscape itself. They are transient, no matter how fierce – they may impact, they may make a mess but they do not last forever.
  • There’s no point yelling at the storm, it can’t hear you.
    Imagine when Hurricane Katrina came rolling in, what person would waste their time on the shore, raging at the thunderheads? What would that achieve? So, when ‘storms’ strike in our lives why is it that we stand there impotently shaking our fist at circumstances we can’t change anyway? Yeah, I don’t know either.

I can get carried away, so I will stop there. I guess what I’m trying to say is, that I know you are having an awful time at the moment and I don’t know why. I don’t think anyone ever knows why bad things happen. I do want you to know that even though we haven’t met, and even though you might think this is really weird and strange – this letter is completely for you. 100% because I want you to know that I am thinking about you, praying for you and supporting you. I am a bit quirky, and I can ramble on, but I hope I have said some things that you needed to hear.

If you ever need to talk – especially about those things you feel you can’t share with anyone else, or if you just want to rage at the storm – you can talk to me. I am close enough to care but distant enough that you needn’t worry about upsetting me or hurting my feelings, most of all I want to be there for you. Because that’s what friends are for, and we are friends (great friends) even though we haven’t met….Yet

Love Always

Amelia xo

amelia@ameliahunter.com (just in case ;))

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Day 21: A Letter To Someone Who Is Broken

Image

Another Beautiful Zaldy Infante Image

Hello Friend,

Is today a good day or a bad day?

I’m sure you’ve had, and will continue to have both. I’m not going to pretend to have all of the answers for you, I won’t even pretend to have any, I’ll just come and sit by you for a while, if that’s okay with you.
I don’t mind if you don’t want to talk, I’m fine with silence, I know that sometimes in the silence we hear the clearest. I just don’t want you to be alone, not even for a moment. No one should walk this path alone, even though thats exactly how it feels. That you’re detached, that the same ground you were conquering yesterday has crumbled around you, leaving you stranded and abandoned on an escarpment built for one. You are facing sharp rocks of grief that tear away at your heart, you are bewildered and disorientated in a blinding fog of powerlessness, and you are battered by storms filled with unanswered questions. Yes, I know what it feels like.

People may try to make you feel better by explaining that you are simply one of many, One of a countless number who have experienced this. They will tell you that endings are simply a part of life. Ignore them. They have no idea what you are feeling.
No one has ever felt this kind of pain, this kind of grief, this kind of loss, because this is your unique torture. This belongs to you.

I don’t mind if you want to cry. Crying isn’t a bad thing. I think that sometimes crying is like bathing a wound that no one else can see, the salt in our tears soothes, and begins the process of healing. It keeps the area clean and free of any bitterness or anger that can get stuck in there if we try to hold everything inside. Crying is the way we acknowledge that something hurts, and I know this is hurting.

I want you to rest. fold yourself into loving arms. I know that you have those around you. Let them carry you for a little while. Anything that is broken must have a time of rest, a time of stillness to let the trauma settle. Don’t worry, the world will keep turning even if you aren’t busy doing all of the things you normally do, and those things will still be there waiting for you when you are ready for them.

You will heal, but yes there will be a scar, however that scar can become something beautiful. You can find the promise within the pain, and you can break through into the sunshine once more. I know it.

So for now my broken friend, I will just sit here beside you and hold your hand. I will keep my breathing steady, so that you have a rhythm to follow. I will be here through it all, in any way you need me.

That is what friendship is all about.

Now close your eyes and rest, the sun will come out again in the morning.

Love Always

Amelia xo

Day 8: A Letter to Someone Going Through The Worst of Times

To my Dear Friend,

I know it hurts right now. I know that it feels like every breath is hard work, but you’re strong, the spark inside you has not gone out – no one has the power to do that to you, you need to remember that. The hard part about what you are going through is that to look at you, no one would know that you are hurting. No one can see the wounds you are trying so hard to keep hidden, except those of us you trust enough to let behind the walls. I cannot tell you how proud I am that you let us in, that you have asked for help instead of trying to cope alone. No one should have to go through this alone.

I want you to know that there is a way through this, that God does have you in His hand and He will see you through. I can’t give you the answers I know you want, I don’t think anyone can, but those questions will cripple you if you let them. They will keep you tied to the past, they’ll keep your eyes upon all of the things you have no power to change.

Sometimes things happen to us, things we don’t have a say in, circumstances can blindside us and all of a sudden we find ourselves stripped to the core of who we are, raw and bleeding. In that moment, when you look around yourself and feel like there is nothing left, it’s then you need to remember that you always have the gift that God gave to every human being. Something that no one can ever take from you.

Choice.

Only you can choose where you let your thoughts go – upon the trauma and injustice or upon the possibilities in your future. Only you can choose who you surround yourself with – those who support and uplift you or those who feed your misery and keep you trapped. Only you have the choice to keep walking forward or to surrender to despair and drift away, lost in the void of your pain.

Think about it, sure the choice to move forward is difficult, but it’s yours. Think about how empowering that is! Let that power infuse you, let it pour liquid steel through your spine. You have got power, you can fight, you can win. 

It doesn’t mean that there wont be awful days, but what quest doesn’t have it’s challenges. There might be deserts (not desserts :p) but there will also be unexpected streams hidden in those barren places. They will sustain you, and see you through to the next resting place.

You can beat this. I know it, I see the warrior within you. You are a fighter.

Most of all, you are not alone.

All my love xxoo

*Thanks Zaldy for letting me use your amazing picture!