Posted in Letters, PNU

Dear Stressed Sojourner,


Every time I stand in front of the mirror, I have the common, bizarre, vivid visions like yours

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—that whirling dark smoke which seemed to wrap around and suffocate you with nightmares and bitterness until you choke out the magic elements in the periodic table Au Co Na Po and think of vanishing in just a blink of all the eyes staring at you.

It is inside me. It penetrates. It hurts, and all that I ever wanted was to be free once more.

One time, I come across this book by Jennifer Niven entitled, “All the Bright Places” and, instead of merely marketing the book, allow me, dear friend, to give you a glimpse of it: of how it could make your life “forever changed” as it captures the perceivable, the felt, the realities of life.

Not a single college program promised a bed of roses. If you are thinking that the struggles to attain the ideal PNUan exempts anyone, bear in mind that all of us are acting upon the same vision of the school—the same aspirations of becoming innovative teachers. As an aphorism goes, you cannot make a rainbow without a little rain. However, despite the attempts of making your thoughts true, good, and beautiful, it is inevitable to feel like asking yourself the perfect day to die—seeing the floating, mocking faces amidst the crowd, their eyes anticipating you every time you mess up with things. If you break down, one of the realities the novel All the Bright Places taught me reflects in this quote that says:

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On the other hand, you are never alone. It is just this pounding emotion over your chest full of remorse that disables you from seeing the good in things, or just some realities about people and their mechanisms of taking you down for their own vanity, or whatever it may be that manifests itself in the ruins of a melancholic—his or her body language, ways, or thoughts. After all, I reminisced on this very remarkable quotation from the novel which goes like this:

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On a positive note, let me remind you to rise above all your misfortunes because there is always a way for those who will to be free from the bleakest of times.

I have found my way through these two quotations: “I learned that there is good in this world, if you look hard enough for it” and “It’s not what you take, it’s what you leave”.

There’s a bright place around the corners of this school. It’s just about how you see them.

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