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An Open Letter On Growing Apart

Dear You,

You are never the same person twice. Every single day you shed an old part of yourself that is no longer needed in an attempt to be better. You learn something new, you challenge your way of thinking, your priorities change. It is in our nature. Growth is mandatory in order to survive. Change is something to be accepted and not be scared of. Improvement should always be applauded when it’s good for you. The scary part is how it is viewed in the eyes of others. There will be times when you outgrow your surroundings. It may happen overnight or it may happen over a period of time. But it will happen. How you deal with it will greatly affect your progress.

You hold onto the memory of people longer than you hold onto them. Once they’ve outgrown the nostalgia you’ve put them in it’s difficult to let go of who they used to be. It’s easier to remember them as they were rather than to look forward to who they are becoming. Preventing someone’s growth is a selfish act. Refusing to grow apart is a decision made out of fear. If there is a way to grow separately but not apart let me know when you find out.

Sincerely,

Say

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Savon BartleyComment
A Open Letter On How To Heal

Dear You,

Often times, the thing that prevents you from healing is you. Instead of letting the wound restore itself you reopen it over and over again. It could be because you’re looking for an explanation. It could be you need a reminder of the pain you felt when it happened. Or you are obsessed with checking on the progress you’ve made. No matter what your intention the more you irritate the scratch the more likely it will scar. The cliche is true. Time heals all wounds. You must learn to be comfortable with your scars and learn how to take care of them. Knowing how to tend to old injuries prevents them from coming up at the wrong time. If you don’t want to hurt anymore you should block that number. You should forgive yourself. You should stop going to that place. You should allow the wound as much time as it needs to heal properly. Each bruise or cut is a lesson learned and a reminder to yourself.

The worst thing you can do is blame others who are not responsible for the damage that’s been done to you. There are moments when your hurt speaks before your words do. The pain gets louder and takes over the conversation. Misery does indeed love company. No one want’s to hurt alone. So you hurt others to feel less by yourself. You can’t reverse the wound. It is not a gift you can return. You can only embrace the scar or be bitter towards it. It has now become a part of your story. The way you decide to tell it is up to you.

Sincerely,

Say


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Savon BartleyComment
A Letter That Responds to Your Text

Dear You,

I saw it but I couldn’t answer. I don’t have a concrete reason as to why. My body wasn’t busy but my mind was. There are many things happening at once. My attention is being pulled in multiple directions. My job refuses to let me sleep. My friends are constantly asking me what’s wrong. My mother wants to know why I’m never at my house. I’m frustrated because I’m not pursuing my passion. Or rather I am, but I’m not at the pace I would like. I’m stressing because I don’t know how I’m going to make it to the next check. My depression is acting up. My energy is depleted. There are personal events happening that I’m hiding from everyone. I’m exhausted, I’m frustrated, and when I saw your text it crippled me.

Time with myself is a rare diamond. I live in an era when privacy is a luxury and not a privilege. I am expected to be on call and reachable at all times. I am not allowed to be alone, think for myself, or keep any aspect of my life private. The obligation to constantly pull myself out of whatever mud the day brings to satisfy your need for attention is a chore I never enjoy.

I didn’t respond to your text because I didn’t want to talk. I didn’t respond to your text because I didn’t have enough energy to invest in a conversation at the time. I didn’t respond to your text because you don’t know how to hold a conversation. Because I was at work. Because I was sleeping. Because I was doing something that required my full attention. Because I knew you didn’t want anything anyway. But to answer your question.

Nothing. Hbu?

Sincerely,

Say

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Savon BartleyComment
An Open Letter For Those Struggling to Let Go

Dear You,

You hold onto things because you’re afraid of what happens when it’s out of your hands. You worry too much. So much so that you hold onto things that don’t even belong to you. Your heart is too big. Or your heart is too afraid. It’s difficult to tell the difference.

The fear of what happens when it’s out of your hands is the same fear a black mother feels every time her only boy leaves the house. She knows she can’t keep him inside where he’s safe. He has to leave. Has to learn how to take care of himself. He has to experience life. There are things she cannot teach him that he can only know out there.

The fear of letting go is the same fear as when you allow someone to read your writing. It loses the crutch that you call your voice. Your words can longer lean on tone or cadence to guide it through another person’s ear. You can only hope that their eyes hear what you really mean.

The fear of letting go is when you love them so much you can’t stand to be away from them. So you call, and you text, and you dm, and facetime, and snap, and you post, and hold, and kiss, and you hover and do everything you can to make sure they don’t go too far.

Letting go requires trust. If you can’t let go then that means you don’t trust yourself or trust what you set free.

Sincerely,

Say

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Savon BartleyComment
An Open Letter to Those Who Need Space

Dear You,

There’s nothing wrong with you. You don’t have to apologize for feeling this way. You should be applauding yourself actually. There’s an honesty that comes with your ask that shouldn’t be overlooked. You are in tune with your body, your wants, and your needs and you know that you have reached your limit. When you say you need space they will ask you “why?” Know that this is a telling question about the person who’s asking. It’s dismissive and inconsiderate and it undervalues what your needs are. Before they ask you why you need space they should ask you what or who do you need space from?

Distance does many things. It’s a unique type of magic. Distance lingers, it creates suspense, it removes, it puts back together, it heals, and it allows for growth. Creating distance provides a sense of sanctuary. It makes you feel safe. In control and unaffected. Understanding exists in the space between two points. A fire can be seen as beautiful or dangerous. It depends on how close you are to the flames.

When you say you need space you’re saying you need distance in order to see clearly. When you say you need space you’re saying you need to understand. You’re saying you need to grow. You’re saying you need to heal, to learn, to fall apart, to put back together, to breathe. You need to collect your thoughts, gather your emotions, find yourself, and come back with a better understanding.

So when they ask you “why do you need space?” what they are actually questioning is why do you need to grow? Why do you need to heal or learn or breathe? Anyone who questions your necessity (space) is also questioning your well being. They are not for you. They do not see you for who you are but instead for what they need you to be for their own benefit.

Be vocal about your needs. There is nothing wrong with requiring space. You do not need to apologize for it or be ashamed of it. Everyone deserves room to grow.

Sincerely,

Say

Sincerely, Say are letters written by Savon Bartley about love, life, travel, and art. Listen to the show on Anchor, Apple Podcast, Google Podcasts, Breaker, Spotify, Radio Republic, Castbox, Overcast, Stitcher, Pocket Casts. Leave a comment. Share with a friend. Sign up to receive private letters.

Savon BartleyComment
there's a treasure at the bottom of your kiss

I met a girl once. I caught her eye on what I considered to be an off day for me. We talked briefly. She made me nervous. I smiled so hard I dropped the water bottle I was holding and she told her friends it was cute. We went to get Chinese food at this place close to where we first met. We kissed. It wasn’t planned. I told her to let me know when she got home. And after that, I never saw her again.

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Savon BartleyComment