One of the reasons I write is because I love people. Yes, of course my friends and family, but what I really mean is I love our humanity. True, we need to see what’s wrong with the world, and often what’s wrong with it is us. Poverty, racism, selfish politics, narrow-minded judgments, greed–the list doesn’t have an end.
But we can’t stop with the negatives. It’s tempting to feel like the world is getting worse and life is downhill from here. It’s tempting to think we’re slaves to our flaws and being human isn’t all that great.
But let me tell you something: being human is such a wildly cool and incredible thing.
Look at you. You’ve survived bullying and kept it from defining you and your potential. You’ve been told you can’t go into math and science fields because you’re a girl, and you’re getting your PhD. You grew up with less than everyone around you, and you’re making it on your own now and giving back to the world. Your parents weren’t the people they should have been, and you dealt with so much you shouldn’t have. You weren’t born with the advantages and abilities a lot of us have, and you didn’t let it control your life. You were the victim in so many ways, but you kept going.
I mean, really. Look at you. You loved when you hadn’t seen much love yourself. You trusted when you weren’t sure it was wise. You forgave when you knew it wouldn’t even be noticed. You opened your mind and let someone show you something new. You did the brave thing, the kind thing, the selfless thing.
Really take a minute to slow down and look at what you are.
You’ve got a voice that makes me stop what I’m doing and turn up the volume.
You’re so strong, so fast, so agile, we love watching you because you’re a literal celebration of the human body.
You are so compassionate and kind, you stop to notice the people around you and really see who they are and what they need.
You’re brilliant. You contribute to our collective ideas and expand them, turn them upside down, make them make sense to us. You use your youth not as an excuse but as a strength.
You know you didn’t get here on your own and you don’t think you’re better than the rest of us. Even when you’ve made it to the top, you keep on giving back and helping others.
You’re so funny and quirky, you light up whole rooms and conversations and friendships. I want to be more like you.
Being human is such a wonderful, powerful thing. We’ve all got flaws and a nasty broken spot that sometimes gets the better of us. But when that happens, we reach out, because we know we can’t do this alone. We crave deep connection and when we don’t have it, we’re lonely. We need each other. We love so strongly, so determinedly, that even when we get hurt we keep on loving.
Forget what you’ve told yourself that you are for just a moment more, and take a good look at who you actually are.
You make art. You dance, paint, write, sing, sculpt, speak, build, and design beauty and truthful things into the world. You make sure love wins. You speak for people who can’t speak for themselves. You help us up when we’re out of the resources and willpower and knowledge to help ourselves.
You do all of this. You’ve got all of this inside you, because you’re human. And that’s why I write fiction; I write about people and their lives because I believe so strongly that being human is a wildly cool and incredible thing. Love being human. Own it. Use it, develop it.
I mean, really, come on. Just look at you. You inspire me. You make me think I can do better. You made me believe I can take crazy leaps of faith and be better for it. The things you do simply stun me, that humans can make such brilliant, thought-provoking, gorgeous things. You believe in things, and you make me believe in them, too.
I want to be more like you.
“The sexiest thing in the entire world is being really smart, and being thoughtful, and being generous. Everything else is crap.”- Chris Ashton Kutcher: