By Izayah Morgan
Thank you to everyone.
The next time you see me writing for The Gatepost I will be 20 years old.
It feels like a much bigger stage than what I was told. I mean, I will be officially leaving my teen years - it's exciting, scary, and well some part of me does not know.
And I think that is a good thing, I remember at a time I was scared of not knowing what the future held.
At times I would question if I was what I thought I'd be when I was younger.
I remember in my early adolescence I would go through phases where I didn’t want to grow old. Because I was scared of the future and becoming in my mind “useless.”
However, that's the beauty of the human experience - the fact that we grow old is why we have youth, meaning, virtues, and value in our lives.
I struggled to write an oped this week because of a combination of factors - current events, friends and family going through major illness, and my own mental health.
Though I must thank my admirable colleague Adam Levine for his beautiful oped this week. Reading it before publication influenced me to keep writing, and to keep going.
Adam, thank you.
To The Gatepost, thank you.
We all need good people in our lives.
To ground us and remind us why we are here.
To remind us we do grow old.
To remind us we love it here.
As I get older, I realize life is perspective. We have different perspectives because of what we went through, our trauma, and experiences.
Does that mean I hate you?
No, I dislike bigotry, sexism, racism, homophobia, transphobia.
In other words I hate hate.
But I love people. I don't think we get told that enough as children. That's why I think hate continues to perpetuate in this world. We don't show enough love to people, when they are children, adolescents, adults, or seniors.
Maybe that's my purpose in life - just to show that we can share a little more love, to everyone, to even those we may think we hate.
The teaching is in the pain we're going through now, and I don't think young people get told this enough. Especially by another young person.
You are learning, growing. Pain is a part of that.
My life’s been a rollercoaster, from times of poverty, to the joy of existence, to the painful reality that life can end based on something that was completely out of your control.
I've faced death a few times in my life, whether it was my own decision or not, the one thing that kept me here was love.
Love of people and humanity.
Whatever you're going through please know you're not alone in your experience. And that there are people here right now who need you.
As I get ready to close this chapter in life, a new one opens, and I believe I have so much story left to tell.
I want you to love yourself.
I want you, to want yourself.