What I Wanted To Say…(an open letter to a dear friend)

I saw you, sitting there in the shadow of yourself. Saw the gray that seemed to cloud around your beautiful face. It was such a contrast to the bright yellow gold that you usually embody, that it seemed surreal. Like a first-time tourist in a country that has not been properly represented in the brochure. You, but not the you I so often picture.

And I just want to say, that it’s okay. (And that you are ridiculously beautiful.)

It’s okay to be you. I love you. And as much as I like the you that you usually project, I am your friend, not a white screen that you need to magnify anything onto.

You are safe.

You are safe to be angry, and scared, and afraid. You are safe to doubt. You are safe in your remembering the things that you know to be true, and also in your searching. You are safe to question, and safe to reject. Safe to move forward, and also to sit down and rest for a bit.

I know you are going through it. And I also know that you are going through it. I know that the valley that you are in is dark, and craggy, and littered with disappointment. That you are trying to walk, and that your feet cannot help but catch on the muck of disillusionment that is all around. I know that the tips of those sun drenched peaks almost seem to mock what life has thrown at you. Because, you have been there, and basked in that sun. You have seen others scale those heights as you looked on. And while it is warming to be up that high, it is also dizzying and hurts your lungs. Mountain tops are pokey and not easily lived upon. It might be hard to remember that from your view right now.

I know that you have tried to look up, because I know that you are one soul that is always looking around. You are a searcher, who has a gift for finding any kind of hope that can be found. I know that faith can be a treacherous climb. That from the valley, mountains seem to block the sun, and cast cold, lonely, shadows on the ground. I know, because I have been there. Have left my own too-big for a girl footprints in the mud. Have felt heart-sore and aching, even when surrounded by people that love me.

I have cried out, and crumpled like a dirty dollar bill, falling inside of myself so deeply, that I couldn’t see having the courage to ever get back up. I have questioned love, and seen life thumb its nose at justice. I have felt the hands of fate shake me, like a tree in a windstorm, until my own branches were stripped of their strength, hanging limply by my sides, hurting. I have felt pain, and anguish, and the empty nothingness ache that fills ones self when you are too exhausted to feel anything.

My situations were different, and I will not trivialize your heartbreak by saying that I fully understand. Because I don’t. Because I can’t.

But I will stay. I will sit with you here, however long this takes. Should years pass in this valley, I will be here, carving our names into the side of this giant rock, telling the truth when you need it. We are here, we were here, we might come this way again.

It has been hard, these last couple years. They have just been so hard, haven’t they? And while I know that you live life like it is one long, float filled, joy parade, I know that there has been an underlying what-if trying to spoil things. You have fought so courageously. I want you to know that it’s okay to be tired. It’s okay to lay your brilliant head down. Sometimes we are the knight, and sometimes we are the damsel. Shining armor is heavy, and weighs on you. If you fall now, love is big enough to catch you. Even if you’re in pieces, even if you’re spent. You are worth catching. And worth being held.

You, who live life knowing how to nurture. You, who inspire. You, who breathe, and weep, and laugh, and still dream. You, who just don’t know right now, and who are quietly flailing in life’s arms. You are stronger than you know, and brave. You are lovely and the kind of wonderful that most people don’t get to experience. You possess the kind of wit and warmth and effortlessness that can only alight on someone with pure intentions. It’s true. Even if you don’t feel it.

The walls are steep, out of this one, friend. They rise too swiftly to make a comfortable journey. There is danger with believing, and hoping, and trying. This life can be such a dangerous place. And while there is nothing I can say to even begin to make things better, I can offer my hand, for anything you need. To help you up, to hold you, or to flip off the unfairness with you.

You have it.

And you have me.



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