Dear Iyanu ‘Lawrence’ Folashade,
Happy birthday, it’s you, me seventeen years on from today. I’m sure you, or no one for that matter, wants to read a letter on their birthday; so, I’ll keep this short. I have come to appreciate your innocence, your impulsive and sometimes chaotic tendencies. You are curious, intrigued by the complexities of everyday reality. You see, feel and dive heart first into the unknown, and it’s time I afford you the freedom you deserve. The freedom to communicate, not only what you see, but what you feel.
The memories of self-harm: depression, anxiety; the sleepless nights in search of the will to live. Our thoughts, bleak, riddled with fear – we acted out – subscribing to the labels of a crude, loudmouth, rebellious comic. And it was in our actions that we found comfort. Doing everything to be seen; but, rarely for who we are. And without our audience, we felt alone, separate, disconnected from a society full of boisterous, aggressive, funny kids who capture just as much attention as you.
I said I’d keep this short, and so I’ll end things here. Through acceptance of our pain, our trauma and suppressed truth, we found understanding. A long-ass trail headed towards a little soul town named freedom. And along its path, we stopped by several two-way discipline spots that serve as altered perceptions of reality, and that’s how you found yourself reading this letter.
See you soon,
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