Classic #2: THE OLD MAN AND THE SEA, by Ernest Hemingway

For the last ten years, Hemingway and I have had a complicated relationship. That is to say, I disliked the first work of his that I read (A Farewell to Arms) and vowed from that point forward never to open the pages of something he’d written ever again. I was disconcertingly stubborn in this resolution, despite positive reports over the years about his superb literary skill. I know I should probably give A Farewell to Arms another chance because I was only sixteen when I read it, and is it fair to keep a decade-long resolution based on a teenage whim? Perhaps; perhaps not.

I suppose it depends on the maturity of the teenager, and while I can’t speak volumes about my teenage maturity, I will say that, as a buddingly independent young woman trying out the world for the first time, the misogyny I perceived to be dripping from the pages of that book really rubbed me the wrong way. I’m no feminist, to be sure, and I can even be said to be a bit on the traditional side now and then when it comes to male-female interaction, but the overt anti-feminist vibe I got in 2001 from A Farewell to Arms left me with a lingering lack of respect for Hemingway. My disdain extended so far and so long that I even spurned an opportunity to take a Hemingway tour of the city while I was in Paris one summer – a tour I now, of course, wish I’d taken.

And I will admit, the main reason I chose to read The Old Man and the Sea is that it’s short (well, that and, I have a boyfriend who is determined to see me succeed in my resolution and has therefore embarked on a quest to find the shortest books possible that can still count as classics). The Old Man and the Sea was the first in a stack of three he sent me home with a couple weeks ago, and I’m pleased to say that I finished it a few days ago within twenty-four hours of picking it up.

It is the story of an elderly fisherman who sets out for a regular day of fishing and ends up attempting the biggest catch of his life. As the story progresses, so does the old man’s frailty, not to mention his resolve, and the reader is pulled irrevocably in to a slow-moving yet suspenseful and endearing narrative that turns the pages surprisingly quickly.

It’s man versus nature, the ultimate test of willpower and strength of both body and mind. I think what I probably liked most about the book was its introspective quality. I sit around and think a lot about my actions and motivations and personality and goals, etc., etc. So I like that the old man pretty much has nothing to do other than sit around in his boat and think about stuff while he waits for the giant fish on his line to get tired of swimming. One thing I found interesting is that, even though the old man spends most of the book alone, either talking to himself or thinking, there is an implicit but strong focus on relationship throughout the entire narrative.

First, there is the relationship between the old man and the boy. The reader is not given a lot of information about their relationship or why they are so close, other than that they have gone out fishing together several times. Their closeness is revealed mostly through dialogue, most notably when the boy says, “‘I remember everything from when we first went [fishing] together.'” To me, this speaks to the deep and long-standing friendship they have shared over the years. Other dialogue and interaction they share serve to provide the reader with a fuzzy feeling that there is a mutual respect between them, each offering and being willing to care for the other, each maintaining a humble independence, and each respecting the other’s right to that independence. This is, in short, my relationship utopia (boyfriend, I hope you’re taking notes).

From the time the old man hooks the giant marlin to the time that he gets back to shore in his boat with the catch, he repeats over and over this sentiment of wishing the boy were with him. It seems a double desire to have the extra strength, help, and fresh ideas (and perhaps even someone to talk to) as well as a pure longing just for the boy to have the experience of being involved in such a monumental catch. He seems to know that none other than the boy would appreciate the adventure itself and understand what it means to the old man so that, by the time the old man gets back to shore with the tale of a lifetime, the reader searches for the boy on the horizon and cannot wait until the old man gets to see him and recount the adventure in such excruciating detail that eventually the boy will almost feel as if he had really been there.

The second notable relationship explored in the book is the one between the old man and the fish he catches. He speaks to the fish often during his great endurance struggle. Two of the more amusing statements he makes are:

“‘Fish,’ he said softly, aloud, ‘I’ll stay with you until I am dead.'”
“‘Fish,’ he said, ‘I love you and respect you very much. But I will kill you dead before this day ends.'”

There are other instances when he calls the fish a brother and his equal. He often laments his resolve to kill the fish, solely because the fish has proved itself such a worthy nemesis. The old man eventually apologizes to the dead carcass of the fish on the journey home because he is unable to pull it into the boat (because of its size) to keep it from being mangled and eaten by the scavenging sharks they meet along the way. The old man feels this is a disgraceful destiny for a fish that fought as valiantly as this one did, and he regrets that he cannot prevent it from happening.

It seems to me like this is the type of dominion God intended man to have over the natural world when he put Adam in charge all those years ago. Killing for the purpose of eating and surviving rather than for sport. Respecting the qualities that make each component of creation what it is rather than assuming inherent superiority. But the old man really gets it. He considers it a privilege to be towed along, farther out into the ocean, in the wake of this enormous marlin; a privilege to have the chance to participate in what turns into a battle of sheer will with the fish.

The third relationship Hemingway invites the reader to explore with him may not be evident in everyone’s reading, but it was certainly so in mine. It is the relationship between the old man and the reader himself, a connection I was surprised to find existed between the pages of this book. I did not expect to be able to identify so easily with a character who is so different from me, but there are so many universal truths in the book that it was nearly impossible not to. For instance, the way that the old man eats only because he knows it’s necessary and not really because he enjoys it anymore. “For a long time now eating had bored him.” I tend to feel this way about sleep from time to time, and I’ve noticed that my feeling only gets stronger with age. It seems like sleeping only serves to get in the way and waste my time and efforts toward realizing my dream of experiencing as much of the world as possible before I die.

“He did not say that because he knew that if you said a good thing it might not happen.” I especially resonate with this idea, though I think here it is more of a nod to superstition than anything else, whereas for me, it is a conscious attempt to guard my heart from becoming too hopeful about its deeply rooted desires. And even though, for the old man, this is purely about fishing and for me, it’s almost exclusively about love, I still find that there is something beautifully common about these beliefs – something that bonds the old man and me in our shared caution.

On page 84, the old man asserts, “…Pain does not matter to a man.” After reading this, I wrote my reflection thus: Perhaps not in the moment, but it might later. At least, that’s how it is with me. Then, near the end on page 117, the narration says, “…From his pain he knew he was not dead.” With this idea, the old man’s experience merges with my reflection from several pages earlier – later, rather than in the moment. And I love the latter quote here. There is something morbidly raw about needing to feel pain to be sure that life goes on. It reminded me of that lyric from the popular Goo Goo Dolls song “Iris,” from back in the ’90s: “You bleed just to know you’re alive.”

As a fourteen- and fifteen-year-old singing along to that song, I had no idea what pain was or what it meant to need such a paradoxical assurance of life. But something about the honest exposure of those words spoke to me, if only for the fact that I was your stereotypical, angst-filled teenager, awed by the idea of emotive pain and all-consuming brokenness.

And now, as an almost-twenty-seven-year-old, I still don’t know that I could claim true solidarity in having experienced such intensity of feeling as Hemingway’s old man – at least, not physically. But I do know that I have been broken, and I have reached into my brokenness and my deep wounds and have juxtaposed seemingly opposing words in attempts to describe my pain – the kinds of phrases that only make sense to others who have experienced the same, irrational-feeling levels of pain and have tried themselves to make sense of it. I can honestly say that I have willingly poured (metaphorical) salt into my numbed wounds in an attempt to stir things up and convince myself that my heart is still beating and that good days will surely come again. Haven’t we all done this at some point? If you haven’t, I dare say you will. And when you do, you’ll be able to identify with Hemingway, with his old man, and with John Reznik.

Finally, I can’t end a review of my first-Hemingway-since-2001 without some mention of his attention to women in this particular work. The first time a woman is mentioned is near the beginning, and it is a reference to the old man’s late wife. “Once there had been a tinted photograph of his wife on the wall but he had taken it down because it made him too lonely to see it and it was on the shelf in the corner under his clean shirt.” Besides the obvious indication of affection, there is something even more poignant underlying this glimpse of the old man’s former life and love. I love the seemingly insignificant detail that it is kept “under his clean shirt.” To me, this implies it is not forgotten in a box somewhere. It’s not collecting dust, and it is not under a pile of his dirty clothes. The picture (and the woman in it) are still worth remembering, but the memory is also still painful, so it stays hidden but in a respectful place. There is also the suggestion that he would see the picture every time he removes or replaces his clean shirt. I was encouraged by this one detail, this one sentence. It made me think, Maybe Hemingway isn’t the misogynistic old codger I thought he was.

A few pages later, I reached this description of the sea: “Sometimes those who love her say bad things of her but they are always said as though she were a woman.” It seems to me like men tend to anthropomorphize in feminine ways the things they love and the things they find unpredictable or unexplainable or indescribable and the things they cannot give up or live without. Again, I have to give Hemingway some credit for this comparison because it does, in fact, feel like a rather high compliment. It acknowledges and respects this strange sort of power that women seem to be able to wield over men and have done since the beginning of time. I know many would argue that the power has sexual roots, but I am unwilling to give men such little credit because, speaking from experience, they have certain power over us too. Perhaps, in a perfect world, it is the mere manifestation of pure equality – a perfect give and take, a perfect partnership and likely what God intended all along. But we don’t live in a perfect world; we live in a broken world, where this supposed-to-be-beautiful relationship gets reduced to a psycho-sexual power struggle because we are all just helpless idiots. And maybe, deep down, Hemingway knew that too.

At this point, I was feeling pretty good about the lack of anti-feminism in the book and was willing to reconsider my opinion of its author. And then, just a few lines after this mature insight about the sea, I encountered: “…If she did wild or wicked things, it was because she could not help them.” Excuse me? This is not nearly as flattering! This is the type of line that hearkens back to my old argument a decade ago about how poorly Hemingway understood women. This makes women out to be helpless, inanimate, unable to choose our own actions, and not to be held responsible for reckless decisions. This removes an enormous amount of credit conceded in the previous description, almost as if Hemingway felt he had to have some sort of antipathetic balance, lest any female readers’ egos get too puffed up by his perceived generosity.

But then, after I calm down a little from my rant, I find that I am willing to concede that perhaps Hemingway held these opinions of women because these are the only kinds of women he knew. After all, he did have four wives. Any jerk who can convince that many women to marry him is either an impressive charmer or choosing incredibly daft women. I suppose both are likely. However, if this is the case (not that he didn’t understand women but that he kept the company of silly, unintelligent, ridiculous women who perpetuate all the stereotypes the rest of us are desperately trying to shed), then I still must admit that I have trouble respecting a man who avoids the company of independent women. I have a pretty strong personality myself, and I prefer to deal with secure men who are neither threatened by my confidence nor too weak to handle it; men who let me do my own thing but know when (and how) to stand up to me. I don’t think I would’ve gotten along with Hemingway. Then again, I don’t know the circumstances of why he was married four times. Maybe he married four confident women who all left him (though I don’t think that was the case).

All in all, I can honestly say that The Old Man and the Sea did not leave me with as bitter a taste in my mouth about Hemingway as A Farewell to Arms did. And when I look at publication dates, I can see why. A Farewell to Arms was published in 1929 and Old Man and the Sea in 1951, and I could feel a maturity in his writing and perspective that is consistent with this timeline. There is still some chauvinism (after all, would he be Hemingway otherwise?), but it also feels like there is less naivete and a subtle (very subtle) respect for women, and I can dig that.

On the whole, I really enjoyed The Old Man and the Sea, would recommend it to anyone, and am glad I decided to give Hemingway another chance. My only regret was that I had to take notes and keep my reflections in a notebook. I would’ve preferred immensely to write in the margins of the book, but considering whom the book belongs to and our historical disagreement on how books should be treated, it seemed like a no-brainer to keep my indiscriminate and irreverent ink markings outside the book’s pages.



Filed under books, classics, goals, reviews

15 responses to “Classic #2: THE OLD MAN AND THE SEA, by Ernest Hemingway

  1. First off, I had to pull out my dictionary for a term or two you used. ;-P

    Secondly, I recall reading this book in school. And, I enjoyed it and understood the relationship between the man, the fish, and the sea (at that age the boy was pertinent, but not my main focus).

    Your insight to dissecting Hemmingway’s biases about women was diving in really deep. I never went there or even thought to go there when I read this book. Bravo.

    I have a recommendation for you: East of Eden, by John Steinbeck. I read this book about 16-18 years ago when I went through one of my ‘back to the classics’ phase.

    Considering your review of ‘The Old Man and the Sea’ I think you would really get into ‘East of Eden’. This book fascinated me. Even though, it could be down right morbid, cruel and horrific. It is a LONG book but it reads well.

    Thank you for another deep, and detailed review. ;-)

    • FW, sorry about the dictionary thing! Was antipathetic one of them? I just learned that word a few days ago, and I’m not 100% sure I used it correctly, but I think it works. If you have never noticed or thought about Hemingway’s bias against women, then surely you have never read *A Farewell to Arms*. It is so much worse than this one as far as how women are portrayed and characterized and treated. I probably wouldn’t have noticed it at all if I’d read this one first, but since I had built up such a disgust with Hemingway since reading AFTA, I was definitely on the lookout for such language in this work.

      A book club I belong to read *East of Eden* this summer. Which means I started it, but I was incredibly busy during that particular portion of the summer, and they were reading it far faster than I was able to, so I didn’t get all the way through it. But I did really enjoy the few chapters I read at the beginning, and my boyfriend (also in the book club) really, really liked it. So I will be picking it up again sometime when I have time to give it the attention it deserves.

      Glad you liked my review, and thanks for commenting!

  2. Keef

    Hemingway never lived through the modern women’s right movement. His thinking and writing would probably reflect the times in which he was living. I’m not an expert on Hemingway or the feminist movement, but it strikes me as naive to read his works with 2011 values in mind. I welcome any differing opinions on the matter.

    Don’t most sailors personify the sea as Hemingway did? Isn’t it a way to describe how to love the sea and not an analogy towards the nature of women? Since most sailors were probably men at the time, isn’t it more appropriate to personify the sea as a woman? Again, I’m not privy to any of Hemingway’s misogynistic tendencies as I haven’t read many of his works.

    • Keef,

      I suppose it’s fine for anything to strike you as naive; however, your perspective also seems narrow to me. For one thing, I never said that Hemingway should portray a 2011 modern-day woman. I merely expressed a desire for him not to be so hateful toward them. Just because it’s what everyone else was doing at the time doesn’t make it right. The fact that everyone was enslaving black people in the 1800s doesn’t mean it was right, and there were certainly people who spoke against it, even though they were in the minority. Hemingway clearly had a brain, so he didn’t have to go with the flow just because society said this was the proper way to treat women.

      I don’t read a lot of works involving the sea, so I don’t know how most sailors personify it. However, again, I was not indicating that the sea *shouldn’t* be described as a woman. I was merely commenting on the fact that it was and found it interesting that men seem to do this with lots of things, not just the sea.

      My hyper-sensitivity to Hemingway’s treatment of women, as I mentioned in the post more than once, was due to a teenage perception I have retained of him for the last several years, based on my reading of *A Farewell to Arms*. (And, I also mentioned that this wasn’t necessarily fair.) No, there is no supremely overt anti-feminist language in *The Old Man and the Sea*, but the reason I talked about *AFTA *at the beginning of the post was to introduce the idea that I would be looking for language that either supported or refuted my opinions from having read *AFTA*. I think any good reviewer would compare an author’s work to something else by that same author.

      I have been trying to decide whether your comment is fair and constructively critical and I am just being oversensitive about *being* criticized, or if you are truly being ignorant and unnecessarily rude. I haven’t come to a conclusion yet, though I’m leaning toward the latter, especially because I have yet to feel like your comment was relevant or helpful. But perhaps I’m being narrow minded myself. Who knows, maybe there’s more of Hemingway in me than I thought!

      PS I do find it interesting that you don’t want to actually identify yourself. Makes me wonder if we know each other and you don’t want me to know it (which I find cowardly) or if you’re just some stranger who happened across my review. Either way, I guess I’m glad for any exposure, so thanks for stopping by.

      • Keef

        What I was implying was that daft women probably would not have caused Hemingway to mature in his view of women. Four marriages seems excessive and probably indicates a pattern of behavior that suggests something other than maturity grown through women. My thinking was societal influences may have had a bigger role. I made an assumption that women having an influence on Hemingway’s maturity was thinking aligned with 2011 values. It really had nothing to do with your 2001 counterpart. The whole thing is really more of a curiosity for me I guess and I don’t really care enough about Hemingway as a person to research it. It only struck me as naive the first read. But ah well, no taksies backsies I suppose.

        My questions about the anthropomorphizing of the sea were actually to get at something else that hadn’t fully materialized in my mind at the time. I should have expected your response after I called your opinion naive. Ah well again. I wanted to make a distinction between characterizing the sea as a woman and ascribing characteristics of the sea to women. My impression was that you said one, but were thinking another. Otherwise, why would you be flattered or offended by either description in the book?

        I wasn’t trying to be constructive or critical. These were observations, take from them what you will. On the second read, the reasons these stood out was the connection that I implicitly made between you and Hemmingway. As a writer, Hemmingway matured. As a reviewer, you matured. The way in which you went looking for misogynistic leanings distracted me from the poignant sentiments of the previous paragraphs. I’m not saying that it shouldn’t have been done, just that I didn’t like how it was done. Your introspection due to the connection with the old man gave me evidence of your maturity while your observations about the sea and Hemmingway himself suggested otherwise. As a whole, I liked the review. Thank you for the respone.

        Anonymity is a wonderful thing. I would love to explain to you all the reasons why it can be good. Why don’t you send me a PM so we can discuss it?

        • Hi Keef,

          Thanks for your follow-up comment. I am afraid I owe you an apology. I flew a little far off the handle at what felt to me like an attack but (in talking to others about it) seems just to have been an innocuous comment. I am sensitive to criticism about my writing, as I believe all writers are. And yet, as an editor, I expect all my authors to take all my criticism smiling. I recognize that there is a bit of a double standard here…

          In any case, thanks for your clarifications and more positive remarks this time around. I’m much more agreeable to discussion, disagreement, and criticism if it’s couched in praise. I think all writers are.

          As far as sending you a PM, I don’t know how to do that on WordPress…but you’re welcome to email me if you wish. I am pretty sure my contact information is available somewhere on the blog…

  3. I had to read that book twice in school – one in 7th and once in 11th – and now I want to re-read to see what new things I pick up on. We read it in 7th with Steinbeck’s “The Pearl” — another short classic for you!

    I really liked Hemingway’s “A Moveable Feast.” It’s autobiographical, which was different/interesting… feels like a conversation with an old friend.

    • Bronwen,

      *The Pearl* is actually one of the three the bf sent me home with when he gave me *The Old Man and the Sea*. So, yes, I will probably do that one too. I’m not sure if it’s next, since I may have had my fill of fishing for the time being, but it’s on the list for sure! As for Hemingway’s *A Moveable Feast*, I may check it out eventually but likely not soon. I enjoyed *OMATS*, but I’m going to leave Hemingway alone for a while! Thanks for reading.

  4. I’ve never read the book, but your review was insightful, and it sounds like one I might like. Though I don’t have the same initial distrust of Hemingway you did, I haven’t yet read *The Old Man and the Sea* because always thought the title itself sounded a bit dull. I now think I’d like to read it. I *do*, however, frown upon your spoiler. You totally told us what happened with the fish!

    • Reese,

      Like I said, I would recommend the book to anyone, but just remember that I said my favorite quality about it was all the introspection. I’m not sure what you identify with in books, but you might not enjoy it as much if you don’t like that sort of thing. I think a lot of my reception of it has to do with where I’m at in life right now too. So who knows. Like it or not, it’s a really short read, so you shouldn’t feel like too much of your time was wasted.

      As far as spoilers… I’m not apologizing for that at all. Anyone who reads a review or thorough analysis of a book should expect such details to be given away. Do I need to lecture you on spoiled endings? I could swear I already have… If you’re reading books just to find out how they end, then you don’t truly love literature. Reading is not about knowing (or not knowing) how it ends.

  5. Audra,

    I know you already told me that you were sorry if this reply came across as rude, so I don’t mean to bring it up unnecessarily. But now reading it again, I do still take a bit of insult at your suggestion that I may not truly love literature. I agree with you that reading and loving a book is not about knowing or not knowing how it ends. There are plenty of books I’ve read multiple times because I just love the writing and the story, and the fact that I know how it ends isn’t the point, because I like seeing how the author gets to that ending.

    I’m considering writing a blog post of my own about why I love literature, and I suppose you can call me out if at that point you don’t feel that I am a true lover of literature, But I do think it’s a bit {insert appropriate word here that I know exists but can’t think of} to say that someone who reads books because of how they do or don’t end does not truly love literature. You don’t have to love a song only because it has a great harmony. Can’t you love it for the message? Can’t you love it for the beat? I think everyone gets something different from books–loves (or doesn’t love) them for different reasons. Maybe I’m reading too much into it, but I felt like in your reply you were saying that I have to love books for the same reason you do, and I just don’t think that’s fair.

    And no, we had not previously discussed your view of spoilers. In any case, I was mostly kidding when I said you told us what happened with the fish.

    • Reese,

      My first reaction to seeing that you had replied to my comment was irritation and a feeling that it was unnecessarily unfair. “We already talked about this on Gchat,” I thought. “Why is she bringing it up AGAIN?” And then I realized that Gchat is private, and this is public, and you certainly have a right to defend yourself publicly, especially since I was less than polite to you. Before I respond to your comment I would like to publicly apologize for my tone and the way my comment came across. The moral of the story is that I should not answer comments on my blog after midnight.

      That being said, thanks for your reply. I think it has made me want to address the subject in a post of its own, so I won’t say much else here. But I would like to encourage you to write that post yourself about why you love literature. I’d love to read it, and I’m sure we’d agree on many points. Your song analogy actually helps me articulate better what I meant, though, when I said I would argue you’re not a true lover of literature. And, btw, I didn’t really mean YOU. I meant the proverbial you. But anyway – I think what I meant, instead of true, was well rounded. And, to piggyback your song thing, I think I would still assert that someone who only loves music or literature for one specific aspect is not a well-rounded lover of the art. And that doesn’t mean that person is wrong. But it does mean the perspective is limited, to a degree.

      Anyway, I’m gonna work on that post now. We’ll see what happens. Maybe nothing!

  6. JJC

    Going to your analysis of Hemmingway’s women and how he describes women based on the apparently stupid women that he knew – here I have to disagree. Being someone that is both independent and smart and was going to and may still marry someone to whom I would be his THIRD wife, I must say – I think you’re thinking about this outside of experience. Let me elucidate what I think is going on here. First of all – lots of artists (Nick is an artist too) have had multiple wives – toss Picasso in too for an example. Artists are complicated people, they are smart yet themselves a bit crazy and absent-minded and easily self-centered and yet passionate and inspiring. They like interesting women. They will absorb themselves into women like they are projects. They also generally like women who will worship them. They like a diverse spectrum of women as well. They immortalize them – that’s why you get these beautiful descriptions. (yes I’m generalizing – but you started it.) When relationship after relationship goes awry – who are they to blame? Themselves? surely not. Though in other moments they will launch into the deepest self-loathing imaginable convinced all the world’s ailments are their fault – not to mention the failure of their relationships. So do they blame the women? That doesn’t work either – because they trusted the women and to then say the women did something bad means they have to distrust their own analysis of people and that would lead to distrusting yourself and when you’re an artist trusting yourself is one of the only things you have – you have to be able to trust yourself – that’s your instinct, that’s how you create art. So – the artist is left to put the blame on something else: parents, life, she went crazy, she wasn’t prepared to do X, something that removes the ultimate guilt from the woman. Through all this – rarely do they ever come to a healthy assessment of the actual cause of the failure of the relationship. Now – if you read the biographies of artists’ wives – I’m sure you’ll find some pretty interesting characters. And – think – back in the day – you had to be pretty independent or progressive or crazy to be a 2nd, 3rd, or 4th wife – shit – you have to be at least one (maybe all three) of those things today. Also – when you fall in love with someone you make excuses and you make allowances and you understand that life is crazy, that person is crazy, and most likely the new wife demonizes the ex-wife – thus exculpating the man.

    All that to say – it’s a little more complicated than you think. Suffice it to say – Hemingway certainly has some issues with women – and like most men – can’t really figure out how to think about them. But his descriptions of women may have more to do with his perceptions and coping with his own ineptitude as a partner than their wit, control and competence.

    Other than that – I loved this. I love your writings and I love your thoughts. And you’ll not be surprised to know that I loved IRIS and always loved that exact line as well.

    • Jess, I appreciate your unique perspective on this. It’s one I definitely have not had, about the artist and his motivations, eccentricities, neuroses, etc. You’re right, I was generalizing out of my own experience, which is both understandable and unfair at the same time. I appreciate your perspective too and think it’s definitely a good point to consider and a good antithesis to the argument I set up. I have found it interesting how viscerally (maybe that’s too strong a word) people have reacted to my description of my experience of Hemingway. I obviously had a very personal experience that no one else has been able to share or understand, and I’ve done a poor job communicating it, but that’s okay. And it’s okay that all our experiences have been different. That’s the beauty of diversity, after all.

  7. Pingback: I Can’t Help it if My Personality is Chocolate | A Literary Illusion

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