"You are stronger than you realise.
You are crueller than you realise.
The smallest words will break your heart.
You will change. You’re not the same person you were three years ago. You’re not even the same person you were three minutes ago and that’s okay. Especially if you don’t like the person you were three minutes ago.
People come and go. Some are cigarette breaks, others are forest fires.
You won’t like your name until you hear someone say it in their sleep.
You’ll forget your email password but ten years from now you’ll still remember the number of steps up to his flat.
You don’t have to open the curtains if you don’t want to.
Never stop yourself texting someone. If you love them at 4 a.m., tell them. If you still love them at 9.30 a.m., tell them again.
Make sure you have a safe place. Whether it’s the kitchen floor or the Travel section of a bookshop, just make sure you have a safe place.
You will be scared of all kinds of things, of spiders and clowns and eating alone, but your biggest fear will be that people will see you the way you see yourself.
Sometimes, looking at someone will be like looking into the sun. Sometimes someone will look at you like you are the sun. Wait for it.
You will learn how to sleep alone, how to avoid the cold corners but still fill a bed.
Always be friends with the broken people. They know how to survive.
You can love someone and hate them, all at once. You can miss them so much you ache but still ignore your phone when they call.
You are good at something, whether it’s making someone laugh or remembering their birthday. Don’t ever let anyone tell you that these things don’t matter.
You will always be hungry for love. Always. Even when someone is asleep next to you you’ll envy the pillow touching their cheek and the sheet hiding their skin.
Loneliness is nothing to do with how many people are around you but how many of them understand you.
People say I love you all the time. Even when they say, ‘Why didn’t you call me back?’ or ‘He’s an asshole.’ Make sure you’re listening.
You will be okay.
You will be okay."
— 21 things my father never told me
La Grande Tapisserie (The Great Tapestry) by Julien des Monstiers, 2013.
it’s the crippling fear of not knowing where your life is heading, what you’re doing, or why you’re doing it. it’s the chest-aching, headache inducing, constant pressure just below your spine, the squeezing hands on your shoulders that remind you there’s nothing to be ambitious about.
it’s the way your world seems to be caving in and the people around you are shadows, blurring motions that pass with every step you take, none of them important, none of them lasting. as they pass, the traces of a smile are left on your face, a shadow of a movement you haven’t practiced in months. you feel worn out, stretched along the pavement, past the flexibility of your own mind and into an abyss that makes you want to cry until you physically are incapable of going on.
they expect you to be wise. reasonable. they also expect you to be everything you don’t want to be. you don’t want to meet the expectations of your grandmother who tells you that it’s live or die. you don’t want to listen to your mother, who tells you that it’s time for you to settle down and live a normal life. you don’t want to listen to your father, who tells you that you need to be responsible. you refuse to give in, to hand yourself over on a silver platter so they can shape you into something that you’re not.
but as you’re fighting, it feels like every breath of air you take makes your lungs collapse in on themselves. you want to live and feel free as a laugh escapes from your lips. you want the touch of another person, the pressure of their finger tips thrumming just below your skin that reminds you that it’s worth it to be alive, that being you is sufficient. you want to have a schedule and live healthy and have something to look forward to on a daily basis.
you want everything they tell you is necessary and it feels like you’ll never get it.