Letter #161

Content Warning: Depression




As I write this letter, I wonder what you are feeling, and what’s going on with you that led you to this site. Perhaps, like me, you’re looking for some place to get volunteer hours. That would be nice, in the sense that missing a few volunteer hours is probably better than crippling depression or anything. But I suspect neither of those options are completely true. For one reason or another, mental health is on your mind. I hope you can ask yourself about it because it’s neither my ability or my place to provide therapy, especially in a single letter to perfect strangers. Maybe you’ve been told to try writing things down or heard this advice given to other people. It doesn’t actually matter what medium you use, as long as you actually listen to the things you have to say. And ask questions; it always helps with the listening.


At this point, I suggest, but merely suggest, stepping away to try it first. Maybe start with “I feel X,” and ask yourself why. Then come back when you think you’ve got something or start to get overwhelmed. It’s up to you.

I feel afraid.

Why are you afraid? What is there to fear? 

What isn’t there to fear? Empires are swept away by the tides of history; how much more so for a single man?

Well, that’s rather cynical, isn’t it? 


The better question to ask yourself is: what is the value of a single life?

What do you mean?

If nothing lasts, neither you nor the work of your hands, then all that’s left is life itself. To whom it may concern, what makes one person precious?

They’re unique.

Sure, but no two rusty soda cans are ever the same, either. 

But there are some people who want rusty soda cans.

Oh? What for? Do they need them? Do they think they’re beautiful just the way they are?

. . . Not to my knowledge. I guess someone would pay for a crumpled chunk of metal because they saw value in it. Isn’t that obvious?

I think it’s more than that; what if someone went out everyday and gathered rusty cans, not because they were already perfect, but because he wanted to make them into something else that was beautiful.

How does this connect to people again?

If everyone is a rusty can, then who is the artist?

Suppose there’s no artist.

Then there’s no value. Rusty soda cans don’t have any love. If anything is worth anything, it’s because there’s someone out there who Loves you.

And by that you mean . . .

I mean an unstopping, never giving up, always and forever Love. I mean Love with a capital ‘L;’ the stuff that belongs in legends, slays dragons and moves mountains–nay, moves Heaven and Earth to be near his beloved. It’s funny how many people laugh at those sorts of claims, as they would a fairytale, and gorge themselves on lowercase ‘l’ love, without ever feeling full. I just wish they knew what was possible.


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