I’m writing to you to see how you are, thankful that we’ve found a way to communicate across this vast distance between us and eager to see if we can find common ground. Our lives are so different that I wonder if our experiences and words themselves will have the same shared meaning.

When I think of what ties living creatures together, I think first of things like food, health, shelter, and protection. But when I think of what gives our lives meaning, I think of other kinds of things, like what is most important to us, what we believe about wisdom and how to find it, how we create beauty in the midst of life’s ugliness, how we understand our lives (and deaths), and how we learn to love despite everything that runs counter to it.

In your end of the universe, do you think about these things? Do you find beauty? What about joy? Or hope? Can you still feel love? I hope so.

I’m not sure how we lost each other to the opposite ends of the universe. Perhaps we were always adrift and untethered from each other. I would have thought our shared histories would have kept us together. I miss thinking we were forever friends. I miss thinking we loved the same things, including each other.

I worry about you now. I wonder about your safety. Do you feel safe or is fear now your constant companion? Your anger and hatred confuse me. I think they have sent you far from this world you once knew, a world where people still try to hear each other and try to find ways to hold onto each other. I hope you come back to us from across this harsh universe.

At least this—please consider a vaccination or wearing a mask. Life itself is precious and so are you. Please choose to survive.

I wish you love and all that’s good,

Diane

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