Letter #2: This Ride is Pretty Surreal

10 April, 2020. Johannesburg, South Africa.


Life's strange. One day it rips you apart and leaves you feeling broken, and the next it leaves you awestruck by its magnitude and apparent impossibility. This fluctuant nature of life that gets a lot of people down; for me, it's what makes life worth living.

You're going to navigate the ups and downs, not because you want to, but because you have to. People will leave and family will die, but you'll also find love and experience what a miracle it is to be living on a giant rock hurling through space. It really is remarkable.

As I write this, I'm in a place where I feel genuinely grateful. Grateful for the people around me and for the place I'm in. I recall very few times in my life where I've been happier or more content, yet the circumstances are the last place I'd expect to feel that way. I'm unemployed and in the middle of making some big changes in my life. Things are uncertain and unpredictable, and I love it. I've learned during this time to love the journey, and I suspect that it's at the heart of this newfound sense of happiness and contentment.

When you're reading this one day, I have a feeling that things will be very different. I guess that this letter serves as a reminder to me and you - learn to love the journey. That seems daunting, but it's easier than you think. Humans are complex, but we're also easily fooled. You'll be surprised by the ability of a song, or a compliment, or a good meal - when genuinely experienced and appreciated  - to change the way you see the world, if you let it.

Seek the good in things. Search for people doing great things. Eat well and exercise often. Cherish the people around you, they won't always be there. Do whatever you can to avoid worrying about the opinions of others, they do not matter.

Life is an incredible ride that's going to be over too soon. It'll have challenges, but just like hunger makes your food taste better, enduring the challenges makes you enjoy the highs a little bit more.