Frank sent me a rather depressing email on Monday. He attached a picture of a boy sitting in the rain.
frankf4321S <email@example.com> Mon, August 4,
I'm sending you a picture of a boy sitting in the rain. Look at it, write me back, and share your thoughts and feelings with me.
Will Waters <willw521K@gomail.com> Mon, August 4,
I identify with everything in this picture. It depresses me because it is exactly how I feel. It's raining and cold and the boy is sitting there alone. My whole life makes me feel cold and alone. He looks sad and could be crying about what a miserable life he has. He's thinking about I don't know what, but he could be thinking about what he's going to do next with his life. He may have been kicked out of the house and doesn't have anywhere to go. It makes me cry.
I'm not sure why you sent it, but I trust that you have some good reason. At least I hope so.
Here's what he wrote back.
frankf4321s <firstname.lastname@example.org> Mon, August 4,
I sent you that picture to show that sometimes it's the way we look at things. It's the perspective we bring when we look at something. It's a matter of perspective. Let me explain.
Here are some alternatives to your perspective. It's a warm night and he decides to go out for a run. He screams in the night as he runs because the cool rain on his skin feels so good. He sits to rest, and of course, there's no one sitting outside at the restaurant because they've all gone inside because of the rain.
OR How about this?. He's just been to your house. He rapped on your bedroom window and when you opened it, he said, "I love you" and gave you a big kiss. You kissed him back and he ran off into the rain.
Or there's this possibility. He went out for a run and is contemplating whether he should run to your house, climb in the window, let you know he likes you, and is gay just like you. He sat down to think about it because he's nervous and is scared about how you might react and what would happen if people at school found out. He makes up his mind and stands tall in the rain, turns toward your house, raps on your window, you see his face in the dim light, and a smile crosses both your faces. You open the window and he tells you he's gay and cares about you. You help him shed his wet clothes and then you both go to bed naked until he says, "I'd better get home." He climbs out your window and runs home in the rain.
See, there are many other possibilities other than the one you locked yourself into. We tend to perceive things from just one perspective when we should look at them from many different ones. You need to start looking at your life in the same way.
Let me know what you think.
Will Waters <willw521K@gomail.com> Tues, August 5,
Frank, you're awesome. I can't believe how your explanation made the picture seem so different. You're right. There are a lot of ways to look at things. I'd like the one about the coming to my house in the rain and maybe staying with me for the night. Right now, I'm pretty sure it's not going to happen, but I could still try to see things differently, and like you said, put things in perspective or at least look at them in a different way.
My life sucks and so that guy sitting in the rain had to have a crappy sucky life just like me. Thanks. This really helped. Changing perspective really helped. I still cry at night. But having you to talk to is good because I only have Max, Jennifer, and you. Like I said, my parents hardly say a word to me. Thanks for being there for me. I'm heading out for a walk with Max to clear my head.
Thanks. You rock! You are a good friend. Wish all my old friends were still good friends. Well, maybe someday. Probably not and that's why I'm getting out of here as soon as I can.
Yer friend and a big fan. Will
frankf4321s <email@example.com> Wed, August 5,
I have one more thing for you. Attached is a YouTube video of a chameleon. You know those animals that change colors to match the environment so they won't be killed or attacked. They blend in. I think you should consider doing the same thing. I won't go into it now. I'll save it for a longer email.
Think about how this can apply to your life. I'm not expecting you to think this is a great idea because you're gay and maybe you think you're not being true to yourself. But if you're miserable and can do something about it, why don't' you become like the chameleon and change your colors to fit the situation so you can survive your senior year.
Let me know what you think.
Will Waters <willw521K@gomail.com> Thurs, August 7,
Damn. What a great idea. I can go along with it. I can become a chameleon.
Frank, you're so cool. What can I say, but thanks. I don't know if I can wait for your next email. So hurry and send it.
Yer the greatest. Thanks. My life already feels a lot better. Will w
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