A Letter From Skyler Moon...
A letter from Skyler Moon
©bobbiedeleon, Writeintowings 2023 all rights reserved
Sometimes I lay awake staring at the stars. I think about their light, their distance, and their lives. Do I have a skylight in my room you might be wondering? Do I have a window that allows me to see the stars clearly at night? The answer to both of those questions would be no. I look at the stars, their light, their distance, and their lives in my mind.
My favorite part about winter has always been the nighttime sky. It’s like suddenly all the heavens are illuminated ten times brighter than normal. It feels like I can reach up and touch the universe. I look up at the stars and I memorize them so that in my mind’s eye I can pull that image up again anytime I want to. If you haven’t figured it out yet, imagination…it’s kind of my superpower.
When you grow up in a small town, with little to do and no money you have only a few options. I'm not knocking small towns, they can be truly amazing and magical, but the town I am referring to in this letter is not one of those small towns. When you grow up in the town, I am speaking to you about, you have one of three options. One, you can run away and most likely end up back forever, no matter how hard you fight that pull. Two, you can get into substances that numb you or make you forget and be trapped for the rest of your life in a cage that few ever make it out of. Three, you can create.
I chose the latter.
I created safe places, I created worlds, I created friends, I created universes. I created languages, books, events, and other lives. I created anything I could until It changed me as a person, and changed what I could see. I created until I created my way out. Most people I think are afraid of change. Afraid of losing what is safe or comfortable. All this is an illusion really, seeing as most of the places we deem as safe and comfortable are in reality neither of those things. We have grown so used to the struggles, dangers, and traumas there, we no longer view them as such. This does not however change the fact that a place that has a shooting nearly every day and where 86% of the population lives below the poverty line is not safe or comfortable.
Why would anyone stay there you ask? Good question, the answer is more complex… Most people stay because they see no other option. Some stay because they are convinced (falsely) they can change it without understanding how powerful the powers that be actually are. And some stay because they simply don’t see the truth of it, they still see this town through the eyes of the playful child, oblivious to the surrounding danger.
I know, I know, I sound cynical and bitter, but I assure you I’m not. It’s just that recently I took a trip back to the town I found my way out of, and it was like walking into the twilight zone. It seemed impossible that after all these years nothing has changed. It’s as if time has stood still in that town. The residents have gotten older, and the businesses have changed names or gone out of business, but the core of the town is exactly the same. Frozen in a time loop no one seems interested in getting out of. Or perhaps no one even knows they are in.
My hometown now feels like another planet. Some lost civilization I’ve never been a resident of. I’m an outsider now, and I’m okay with that. It’s uncomfortable to even visit. It is an ill-at-ease feeling. Like something is always lying just beneath the surface ready to destroy anything or anyone that gets in its way. But I can’t help anyone else get out without being painfully aware of exactly what I’m looking at.
I should probably take a moment to introduce myself since it has just occurred to me that I have been chatting away but neglected to tell you whom you were talking to and why. My name is Skyler Moon and if you can hear me, I’m here to help you find your way out. Out of a town, out of a danger that until this moment you were probably completely unaware even existed.
You can feel it now, can’t you? Your heart rate sped up a little, your breaths increased, or you may have taken an unexpected deep breath. You know by how you are feeling that you’ve just been awakened to something, and now my friend you will have to run or follow this path to its conclusion.
The town I am telling you about is a real place, with real people. The residents go through the same routines almost every single day, completely unaware anything is wrong. They pick up on a few things here and there and they may even say something once in a while or fight for a cause or two. But then it all fizzles out and they settle back into the illusion of comfort and routine. What I am about to tell you will pull you out of the illusion so be very careful of the choice you make right now.
If you choose to continue, then you will see the truth and you will never be able to fully go back in. If you choose to go back in, you will eventually settle back into the illusion of comfort and safety that doesn’t actually exist there. But you will always wonder from time to time…what did I know, what did I try to tell you that you didn’t want to listen to? But the time to hear it will have long since passed.
The real name of our town is not important because it has not belonged to said town for generations. I intend instead to give you the actual name, the name the town is currently using to control all of its citizens like puppets on a string. The town I am referring to is Apathy in the county of Greed. The funny thing about Apathy, it has just enough little businesses or covers to be seen as “normal” or “safe”. A cute local coffee shop, a little diner or café, a school, and let’s not forget the staple, multiple churches of all different denominations most of which are more about offerings, appearances, and judgments than showing the love of any god.
Again, I do not mean to sound cynical, but I know this town and everything in it better than you can imagine. So, I speak not with cynicism but with caution. I know just how powerful apathy’s illusions can get. I also know how hard it is to break it, and then harder still to escape it.
If you are still with me, take a journey if you will into a day in the life… Picture people waking up, they go to the bathroom, and they let their dog(s) outside. They try to eat something quickly...if they have time, which they rarely do. They are having coffee…or maybe getting coffee at the cute local shop I mentioned earlier, on the go.
By this time, they are already overwhelmed by all of the things they have to get done today and the sun is barely awake. They get the kids, animals, and their spouse (assuming they have one) ready and then get themselves ready. Then it’s out the door for school, work, doggy daycare, and whatever else the day has in store.
obligatory smiling pics with kids for social media, obligatory pic of yourself for social media, obligatory pic of your coffee for social media #supportyourlocalcoffeeshop
After all we wouldn’t want to lose that glorious illusion of happiness, comfort, and safety, would we? Then, it’s on with the day. They run errands, pay whatever bills they can afford to, go through the workday whether that is at a job or at home (which is a full-time job in itself), and then it’s the end of the day. They get dinner, attend a kid’s game, watch something mindlessly, or scroll on their phone, and then it’s bedtime and they can barely remember anything about the day including the drive home. Why? Because everyone who lives in Apathy is on autopilot. Every day of their lives is nearly the same as every other day before and every day that will come after it. And this rinses and repeat cycle goes on and on and on for generations.
Meanwhile, there are drawings they never show, songs they never sing, kids they never teach, places they never go, debts they never pay, wealth they never build, and love they never find. All because they are stuck living mindlessly in a town that robs nearly all of its residents of purpose, of calling, of gifts, of joy, and ultimately of existence. They train the residents to teach their kids that this is a safe and happy and comfortable life and one they will carry on one day. Completely unaware they have just given Apathy the same permission to puppeteer their children as they gave away themselves.
But there is a way out, assuming you care to hear it. It’s called creation. Something that requires imagination, freedom, and thinking outside of the box.
Create, create anything, and put yourself out there. Create moments, create space, create crafts, create teaching moments, create art, create songs, and create a path of purpose until you see the road that leads out of apathy.
Be kind, and generous, thankful, and notice the people around you. Look up!
Encourage your kids to create and allow them out of their comfort zone. Allow them to do plays, to write, to sing even if you think it sounds bad. Allow them to color outside the lines, to not know what they want to be at 30 when they are 5. Allow them to play an instrument until it actually doesn’t hurt your ears to listen to. Allow them to try and to try again until they find what it is they were put on this earth to do. Let the world see what they have been gifted to do, what you have been gifted to do. Allow them the freedom to leave when the time comes and to fly on their own with the hope you have also found your way out.
Once you find your way out of apathy it’s like the whole world around you changes. Don’t let that place destroy you, the way it destroyed so many, killed so many. The way it almost destroyed me, almost killed me.
I hope you chose to listen, and that you choose to keep listening, keep learning, keep growing, keep searching, and keep creating. When you do these things, when you create, when you try when you take the chances, strings from puppeteers won’t work on you anymore and apathy will lose its hold and you will be free to pursue your purpose and to make a difference in the world around you, for you and for your children should you have them.
One last thing before I go on to fulfill my own call to create… when you leave the town of apathy, you have to pass through the rest of Greed County. Do not fall for their traps. Do not look back on where you came from with disdain or disgust like you are better than all the people still living there, because you/we are not.
Some people simply are not ready for what it takes to break free yet. Some simply cannot see the choice, but that does not mean they won’t. If you fall for the trap of Greed county, they will convince you that you are better and worth more than people still in the town you left behind. This will cause you to become cold and unkind to people who will need your help to see the way out themselves. Then when you least expect it, you will awaken back in the town of apathy. And you will have to start the entire process of breaking out over again. And each time you end up back it’s harder to leave.
I know you have a lot to think about now so, I will let you get to it. You can do this! I have faith in you!
Dream again, find your voice again, find your purpose, wake up, come back to life, and go change and make a difference in the world, in whatever way you can. Whatever way you are called to. You my friend are just getting started, your time has not passed. But it takes a leap of faith to find purpose and it takes leaving the town of apathy and the county of Greed behind.
I look forward to seeing you in Purpose.
P.S. If you don’t know what the Twilight Zone is, look it up. There is a classic tv version and a modern tv version of the show both are full of life lessons put in very odd and unique ways.