Welcome to the next installment of Letters to Myself. What I thought was going to be a one-off after reading Yes Please, I’ve decided to make my letters a weekly series based on the books that I’m reading. I’ve found that there is something about writing letters that is not only cathartic, but truly allows me to wrap my head around the meaning behind the words that I have just read.
Letters are also the one medium that truly encapsulates my favorite parts of books: the words. Most specifically the particular sentences or collection of words that leave you spellbound. Yep, you know the ones. You read a line and then just stare at the page because the words were that good.
Well, I’m a sucker for great quotes and Red Queen was filled with them, but my favorite was taken from page 191:
“Revolution needs a spark,” I murmur, repeating what Julian would say in our lessons. “And even sparks burn.”
Dang. This was the single line that for me, defined the entire book. It’s a call to arms for a 16 year old to revolutionize her life, her world, and ultimately, herself. Talk about compelling.
Dear 16-year old Madilene,
If I know you, which I can say with steady confidence that I do, you’ve probably just gotten home from cross country practice and have stealthily (so you think) made your way to the safety of your bedroom so you can do “homework”; which is also known as texting your friends and crush. You are playing top 40’s hits at full blast and are consistantly updating your Facebook status to reflect how “busy” you really are.
As a sophomore, you are on the brink of beginning to figure out who you want to be and how you’re going to get there. You are vibrant and creative and are going full steam ahead towards becoming a journalist. You’ve started to make real friends both at school and church, and you are enjoying preliminary success as an “athlete to watch” in the world of cross country.
However, I also know that you’re struggling. You’re struggling through Algebra III, you’re struggling in your faith, you’re struggling to figure out who you are, and you’re struggling to be unique while still being the exact same as the girls in your class.
Life is tough my dear, but so are you.
You have the ability to be a spark, the ability to fan a flame and start a revolution. Now I’m not telling you that you have overthrow the government, solve the hunger crisis, or figure out how to cure cancer so don’t fret.
What I am telling you is that you need to fight. You need to be a warrior and fight for what you believe in. Fight for yourself, your friends, and life that you want to create. Understand that at times you will feel defeated and it’s okay. But pick yourself up and you won’t ever be kept down.
Persevere. The greater the obstacle, the greater the success in overcoming it.
I won’t lie to you, high school sucks sometimes. College is hard. The real world is difficult. It’s easy to be defeated. The boy you like won’t ask you to prom (sorry in advance), you’ll spill coffee all over yourself before your final project, and you’ll “forget” to go to the grocery store and eat Chipotle for 3 meals straight. It happens.
Find your spark. Fan that flame and be passionate about whatever it is that your heart desires. A revolution will be started. Even if is only in your own heart, sometimes my dear, that is the best place for it to begin.
Lots of love and tacos,