Learning Value from Sherlock
After a long hiatus, Sherlock finally returned to everyone's screens. What I did not expect, however, was the amount of pain I felt. On the second episode, Watson and Sherlock had this one exchange that shot an arrow to my heart:
John: You did not kill Mary. She made a choice to save your life. You didn't make her do it, nobody could make Mary do anything. You didn't kill her.
Sherlock: In saving my life she conferred a value on it. It is a currency I do not know how to spend.I haven't had anyone die for me, but you know it's a good show when you can empathize with the feelings of the characters, and at the same time have it resonate deep inside the recesses of your heart.
val·ueValue is such a compelling topic. We value people, and people value us. But this is often not the case, sometimes (more like most of the time) we aren't valued. Here's the thing bud, value was never supposed to be seen as something two-sided. I had this conversation once with a Philosophy professor from Ateneo, I asked him whether it was better to have loved and lost, or not to have loved at all. This was his reply:
the regard that something is held to deserve; the importance, worth, or usefulness of something.
It is better to have loved and lost because human becoming seems to be oriented toward realizing one's self as a person who opens to others and is recognized by others as valuable. And so, when one loves, one realizes a profound need to realize one's self as a person. Unless one is drawn by others to be responsible for and value them, one will never realize one's capacity to become a creative and caring being. One never discovers the possibility of one's freedom either--that is to give one's self to others in valuation.
But then, the question is really wrong if you think about it. Because when you ask was it worth it means you didn't really love. To ask if it was worth it means that you were expecting a return on your self-giving. But in love, you don't think of returns. You only think of the loved one and if your loved nourished that person.Valuing a person is no easy feat. We only value those we think deserve it. In school, where most of my life currently revolves, let's just say I have more enemies than friends. It never bugged me though. For one, I know that the value I place on people do not go to waste. They may be no Mary, Watson or Mrs. Hudson, but they are definitely valuable to me.
I've never regretted valuing my few friends as precious jewels. Even if my friends don't value me the same way, it never mattered. I would still give them parts of my heart to make space for them to fit in. Whatever they do with the parts of my heart is completely up to them.
Every year, we have this tradition in school of Christmas card giving. The essence of it is to write letters to the people you value. Recently, it became more of a challenge to see how much letters you could get. People would put up posts for people to comment on so that they would write letters for them, and vice versa. I used to do that, but who am I kidding? I received at least 40 letters that year, most of which had no content except "Merry Christmas!". Christmas cards are about appreciating the people you value and wishing them the best, but that was just a joke.
Last year, I decided to be totally mum about the whole thing and not write letters for anyone. A day before the deadline, I finally decided that I had to write letters to my friends. I put my heart into it and gave it to them the next day. What I didn't expect was I still received a hefty amount of cards too! Significantly less, but knowing that I didn't ask for any, I felt valued.
It is a currency I do not know how to spend. That's the thing, valuing people is something normal for me, but to be valued by other people? It's this unbelievable marvel. Reading the letters that night was something truly memorable, thanks to tears that came out. When you're valued by someone, you just can't help but make sure you're worthy of their valuation of you, and that makes you a better person. It made me a better person.
To my friends, I may sometimes have a hard time expressing how much you value to me, but don't ever think that you aren't valuable to me. My heart isn't that big, but I have space for you.