I went into NSLC with my mind open to the possibility of my life being changed, because, honestly, I needed it to. But I went in thinking the experience would change my life, because I think I started doubting quite a while ago that people could. I'm sitting on a plane that is taking me farther and farther from New York by the second, and, therefore, farther and farther away from you. From my window, I can see a storm below. From 31,000 feet up in the air, what looks like a small clump of grey clouds is being lit through over and over again by streaks of lightning. While I'm sure it is terrifying to behold from within, being an outsider is like very few things I've ever beheld. And seeing as I've been morphing into you the last ten days, a metaphor comes to mind.
I am that grey cloud, the cloud which before simply existed. A small clump of clouds that, in the grand scheme of things, is inconsequential. But then the lightning came. It came and changed me, from the inside out. It gave an inconsequential, meaningless clump of grey clouds the ability to light up the night sky, even above cities that glow with electric lights. The lightning first electrified my heart, then my soul, then my mind and body. You are that lightning, Liv. And now that I have been changed by that lightning, I cannot go back to the invisible clump of grey clouds that once was.
But unlike the clouds, I will not go away. I will not evaporate. I have been a light in the night sky, and I will continue to glow and to grow. I hope to someday be the lightning in someone else. This letter isn't hand-written or stained with my tears, because I needed you to know this now. But there are many of those to come. Continue to be the lightning in the hearts of humans that were before meaningless, invisible, grey clouds.
Thank you for being my lightning.
For Liv, one of my greatest mentors.
16 July 2015