Dear Mr. Chbosky,
"And in that moment, I swear we were infinite." In this case, infinite is used to describe a feeling or experience you have that allows you to completely understand the meaning of being full and alive. Some people say that these moments can change your life. They could be anything from silently watching the first snow of winter, or going to a concert for your favorite band and hearing that one song where everyone in the audience falls silent and is connected for that split second in time. Moments like these mean something. They're important; they give people hope that maybe the world isn't as bad as it seems. For me, my great moment lives and bums inside the pages of a certain book, a book that changed my life.
When I first read The Perks of Being a Wallflower I was honestly scared, terrified for that matter. I've dealt with depression and anxiety for a large portion of my life, and reading this book made the true horror of my own mind come to life on page. It was so real and truthful that it scared me beyond belief. About halfway through the book, I had to stop reading. It made me emotionally scared; I didn't want to continue living in Charlie's head when it was so similar to mine at the time. I tucked it away for three months and when I finally pulled it back out and finished it, I realized one thing: that it was one of the greatest and most genius pieces of literature I had ever read. Many teenagers and adults do not fully understand what it's like to deal with depression, anxiety, and other mental afflictions that a lot of people deal with today. For kids and teenagers like me, the book is so easily relatable to real life because it's not sugar-coated. The book doesn't give the horrors of life the pleasure of being numbed just for the public eye. It's an honest and truthful reality of exactly how life is for a messed-up teenager who is thrown into the real world of drugs, sex, bisexuals, abuse, and even violence for the first time.
Not only does this book capture every colorful aspect that life has to offer, but the reason I love it so much is because it gives people hope. It lets you know that that there's always going to be hardships in life that you can't and won't be able to change, but you can learn to cope with them.
"So I guess we are who we are for a lot of reasons. And maybe we'll never know most of them. But even if we don't have the power to choose where we come from, we can still choose where we go from there. We can still do things. And we can try to feel okay about them."
This book tells the story of how to find yourself, and how to be okay with where you come from and where you might be going. Charlie's friendships, relationships, and feelings of being infinite showed me that when life throws you a curveball, there's always going to be people there for you, and that everything will get better.
After I read this book, my depression and anxiety dramatically improved. Continuously doodling quotes from the book on notebook paper and even writing the word "infinite" on my hand gave me that constant reminder that we're all humans full of infinite possibilities. I felt happy, I learned to accept who I am and realize that I'm never going to be alone. Finding yourself and your true friends is a rare thing in high school, and because of your book I've accomplished and become more than I could ever imagine. So here's to you, Mr. Chbosky. After reading this book, I finally felt infinite.