Be perfect.

Be better.

Be like them.

Be you.


At some point in our lives, we are all told to be something that we are not. To be better than we already are or to just be ourselves. These are all words that should never be said to another human being. Because that is exactly what we all are: human. No one is perfect, but at the same time we are all perfect. When we struggle, we often forget that we are all equal. The point of life is not to strive for something unachievable to please those around us but to simply be. To simply exist.

There are two common Latin phrases: “memento mori” and “memento vivere.” The former translates to “remember you must die” and the latter to “remember you must live.” These are two phrases that everyone should memorize and take to heart. By understanding we must die, we learn to live. And by understanding we must live, we learn to appreciate.

There are few things in life that I have found to pull me out of the darkness when I feel lost, but one thing that has never let me down is literature. While this may seem cliché, it is true. In my darkest moments before my transplant, I thought I was going to die and those words on the page helped me see the better in life. One author that has the unique ability to look into the human soul and put it to paper is Jhumpa Lahiri, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for her short story collection, Interpreter of Maladies.

What helps you?

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