Back in 2016, I made a decision. Instead of saying I want to be a writer, I'd say I am a writer.
But claiming that identity didn't amount to believing, feeling, knowing it in my bones. My journey had just begun, in more ways than one.
As the years unfolded, as I tried and failed and learned and tried again, writing often felt like calling randomly into the universe, never knowing when or where my words would land, or indeed, if they would land at all. Some days, writing felt like offering my whole heart, with no one to receive it. I longed for a reader willing to close that circuit and read my words. To hear me.
That’s where you came in—yes, you!
You have been part of my journey. You have helped me embrace the title I nervously claimed six years ago. From you I've learned:
How to show up authentically and vulnerably. Thank you for receiving my words with compassion and giving them (and me) a safe place to land. Thank you for your honest responses and sharings, for giving me a glimpse of yourself exactly as you are. I hope I have done the same in your eyes.
How to walk a long road patiently. I didn't realize the length of the journey I'd chosen—that being a writer meant building a body of work slowly, slowly, word by word. Thank you for your encouragement, for reminding me where I started and how far I've come. Thank you for keeping me motivated and accountable by asking me, what's next?
How to build a positive community. I feel we have been comrades in arms—all of us sifting through the pain and cruelty of the world in order to find the best of humanity within the chaff. You have helped me resist the lure of hopelessness, the numbness of apathy, and instead pointed me toward light and kindness and connection.
For all of this, I give you my deepest thanks.
My husband and I watched the 2009 movie Avatar on DVD in preparation for the new sequel. Once again, I was struck by its ingenuity and vital message about living in harmony with the planet—a message that is amplifying across the world.
I'd forgotten the greeting used by the movie's indigenous population in every context—as a greeting between friends, a communication between lovers, and even an expression of honor before a kill: I see you.
Obviously, the phrase encompasses far more than visual perception of another being. It says your existence is important and meaningful. You have value and significance within this wide universe.
What insight and humility and connectedness are conveyed by these three words.
I wondered if the script writers intended to evoke the Sanskrit greeting, namaste. Though this word is often treated lightly—as a pun on t-shirts or a standard closure to yoga class—it possesses profound meaning. Literally translated, it means the divinity in me greets the divinity in you.
For me, this statement means that the best version of me—my deepest love, my widest embrace, my highest consciousness, my utmost respect—acknowledges the best version of you.
So, namaste, my friend.
I am grateful for you.
I see you.