Dear Heart: An Open Letter to the Real OG

Dear Heart: An Open Letter to the Real OG

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Dear Heart,

From day one, you've been fighting for me. From heart murmurs, to breaking, to emptiness, to fulfillment, to happiness. I am so proud of all you've done and continue to do. Most of all, though, thank you for being so big and open; for continuing to love and give and let light in. You've seen more in our 21 years than a normal heart should, but you never let me lose sight of what was important.

I knew you were special from the moment I realized what you were and what you could do. You let me feel all the pain, guilt, and sadness of others, while allowing me to grow my own love for them to make up for what they lacked. Even when someone didn't deserve it or hurt me to the point of no return, you never let me love them any less. For that, I thank you; I thank you because it allowed me to see the truths of the world, no matter the ugliness or bitterness.

I am continually striving to be my best me, and helping others to see their best selves as well. It's hard in the world we live in to be so open and accepting and willing and loving, but I was lucky enough to be blessed with you, heart, because I can share you with everyone who was not so lucky. Our world has so much hatred and animosity and distrust, that it's saddening and upsetting to see so many affected by it to the point of complete isolation of their heart and feelings. We feel because of our hearts, we love because of our hearts, we live because of our hearts, and to see so many people banish what their heart wants is completely maddening when there's proof of the joys the heart can bring.

You are far from perfect, I know, but you're as close to it as a human heart can get; I don't know what I did to deserve you, but I'm thankful for you. You've been underappreciated by many who've had the extraordinary pleasure of experiencing just a smidgen of you, unable to handle you in your generous, loving entirety. You scare people, heart, because of your complete open honesty, unconditional love, quick forgiveness, and strong empathy. You scare me, too because what you give me is so much sometimes, I don't know how to handle it. Despite this, you still give and give and give, to me and everyone else, forcing us to feel everything.

Heart, I am forever indebted to you for all the love and joy and sadness you bring me, on a daily, monthly, yearly basis. Even now, as I sit at work, letting thoughts overtake me and pain consume me, you are sending endless amounts of hope and peace. How can I not trust what you feel, when you've gotten me this far? How can I not take what you're willing to give when I am desperate for it? How can I not be grateful for you when I am nothing without you?

This is my letter to you, Heart, because you, and I, deserve it and need to remember it.

Cover Image Credit: Ben Kerckx/ pixabay

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8 Reasons Why My Dad Is the Most Important Man In My Life

Forever my number one guy.
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Growing up, there's been one consistent man I can always count on, my father. In any aspect of my life, my dad has always been there, showing me unconditional love and respect every day. No matter what, I know that my dad will always be the most important man in my life for many reasons.

1. He has always been there.

Literally. From the day I was born until today, I have never not been able to count on my dad to be there for me, uplift me and be the best dad he can be.

2. He learned to adapt and suffer through girly trends to make me happy.

I'm sure when my dad was younger and pictured his future, he didn't think about the Barbie pretend pageants, dressing up as a princess, perfecting my pigtails and enduring other countless girly events. My dad never turned me down when I wanted to play a game, no matter what and was always willing to help me pick out cute outfits and do my hair before preschool.

3. He sends the cutest texts.

Random text messages since I have gotten my own cell phone have always come my way from my dad. Those randoms "I love you so much" and "I am so proud of you" never fail to make me smile, and I can always count on my dad for an adorable text message when I'm feeling down.

4. He taught me how to be brave.

When I needed to learn how to swim, he threw me in the pool. When I needed to learn how to ride a bike, he went alongside me and made sure I didn't fall too badly. When I needed to learn how to drive, he was there next to me, making sure I didn't crash.

5. He encourages me to best the best I can be.

My dad sees the best in me, no matter how much I fail. He's always there to support me and turn my failures into successes. He can sit on the phone with me for hours, talking future career stuff and listening to me lay out my future plans and goals. He wants the absolute best for me, and no is never an option, he is always willing to do whatever it takes to get me where I need to be.

6. He gets sentimental way too often, but it's cute.

Whether you're sitting down at the kitchen table, reminiscing about your childhood, or that one song comes on that your dad insists you will dance to together on your wedding day, your dad's emotions often come out in the cutest possible way, forever reminding you how loved you are.


7. He supports you, emotionally and financially.

Need to vent about a guy in your life that isn't treating you well? My dad is there. Need some extra cash to help fund spring break? He's there for that, too.

8. He shows me how I should be treated.

Yes, my dad treats me like a princess, and I don't expect every guy I meet to wait on me hand and foot, but I do expect respect, and that's exactly what my dad showed I deserve. From the way he loves, admires, and respects me, he shows me that there are guys out there who will one day come along and treat me like that. My dad always advises me to not put up with less than I deserve and assures me that the right guy will come along one day.

For these reasons and more, my dad will forever be my No. 1 man. I love you!

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Being Ugly

What it means to me

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Due to a series of ongoing events throughout my semester, I've reconsidered what it means for someone to truly be ugly. Though it is often used in terms of appearance, I do not see it as such-- now more than ever. Ugliness runs deeper than appearance-- it runs within one's soul and festers into other areas of one's life, particularly in their treatment of others.

I view ugliness as someone's conscious capacity and implementation of malice. Taking time and energy out of your day to hurt someone else, that's what I view as ugly. Some offenses are more minor than others, however, it is still a conscious effort to hurt or affect someone else negatively-- and that's the source of the problem. I truly wonder what causes that sort of behavior in someone, as I, along with most people, simply do not invest time or energy into hating or plotting against others. It seems like a full-time job.

I can theorize all sorts of reasons as to why someone would act this way: hate, jealousy, vengeance, etc. Yet, all of these reasons don't hit the root reason. It almost seems that some people are just innately ugly in their soul. This alludes to the timeless debate of whether one's personality is due to nature or nurture. Again, although our surroundings and environment do have a large effect in our behavior, that alibi only goes so far when multiple people are placed in the same environment, in the same situation, and only some are willing to cross moral boundaries in order to hurt the others. Just because an environment applies pressure to people, does not mean everyone is going to act out in malice, and it certainly does not give everyone an excuse to do so. Some people are simply conniving and, well, ugly inside.

If you have ever encountered people like this, I know from personal experience that it is such a drag. You have an enemy, essentially, whether you chose to or not, however based on their hatred towards you, they are now considered an enemy, a hater, and any other associated term. Know that they will do anything in their power to bring you down, even if it requires bending the truth and creating elaborate schemes, but you have to keep on doing you. Let them obsess over ways to bring you down. At the end of the day, their time and energy is being invested into bringing you down, while yours is being used to build yourself up. They will fall by default. So, keep your head high, act in grace, and make your money. They can sip on their Haterade and watch from below.

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