To Nobody in Particular,
I believe that every person comes into your life for a reason. It might sound silly, but for me . . . well . . . I think the acquaintances we make and the relationships we form, build, and maintain serve a specific purpose. They help us, in one way or another – help us to learn, to better ourselves, to grow. The people – whoever they may be – teach us to be kind, to be more open-minded. They help us not only to communicate, but also to listen. To empathize. To think positively, even in troublesome situations.
It doesn’t matter how long a particular person might stay with you – it could be a few months, or it could be several years. It could be as brief as a conversation with someone on the sidewalk. You may never see that person again; nevertheless, he or she or they made an impact. In that moment of interaction, somehow, something inside of you changed.
The thing is, I don’t feel like I’ve really thanked you for coming into my life, for being my friend. Or rather, I feel like I haven’t thanked you enough. You’ve been so kind to me, and so . . . so available. If I need someone to talk to, you’re always there. You listen, and let’s be real, you give some pretty damn good advice. You’re grounded and logical . . . a glass-half-full kind of person. Your voice reassures me when I’m down, loosens the knot in the pit of my stomach when I feel like my day has gone from bad to worse. Even in the midst of a crappy situation, in your eyes, life will always turn out okay again, even if it takes time. Your door is always open if I need it, you tell me, and you mean it. That’s one thing about you I appreciate more than anything: You follow through with what you say.
Sure, I haven’t known you as long as some other friends of mine, but I know I can turn to you if I ever need anything. It’s automatic, like a reflex. I have a problem, and you’re the first person I want to talk to. I know I can trust you, and to be honest, that’s a really big deal for me.
It’s not easy for me to trust people, you know? It’s really hard for me to open myself up and lay everything out there for all to see. I hate feeling so . . . so exposed. So vulnerable. So weak. People can formulate opinions about me based on things I’ve done, things I’ve said. And I’m terrified of being judged. What if there’s a part of my past – a part of me – that drives you away? It hurts just thinking about it. Because that’s the last thing I want to happen.
It doesn’t matter who criticizes me or why. I feel completely ashamed regardless – not to mention embarrassed and God knows what else – so I retreat far inside myself and lock myself away. Nobody can get to me then. I’m pretty good at making sure of it.
Of course, it’s not healthy. I know that. But it’s my go-to defense mechanism. It’s habitual. I build a wall and disappear behind it. In my mind, it’s the best way to protect myself.
So . . . I just want to say thank you. Thank you for opening me up, for helping me break down that wall. Thank you for putting up with me, for being around whenever I need it. Thank you for being such a good person and friend. You choose to keep your door open for me even though you really don’t have to; there aren’t enough words to tell you just how much I appreciate it.
My door is open for you as well, you know. Just in case you need a reminder. If you ever need anything – seriously, anything at all – I’ll always be there for you, just like you have been for me. Don’t ever forget that.
And, I mean, if I forgot to mention it earlier . . . thank you. Again. For everything.
All my love,