Oxygen Masks, Part 2

I write this one for my best friend.

You really understand who I am. You see me. You always did. In fact, I think one of the reasons I drank was because I couldn’t see what you saw. I didn’t believe it. I felt I could never live up to your vision. So, I drank and got mad at you and would find a way to sabotage our friendship.

But you didn’t run. You somehow believed (again and again and again) that I would come back.

I know I’m the reason I stayed sober this past year. But you helped give me the strength to keep trying. Today, I no longer look at all those attempts as failures. I am now able to see what you saw: A person not willing to give up.

And now I’m here to say: I see you. And I didn’t run, either. I know why you argued the way you did back then. You have your history and I have mine. And when our learned behaviors from the past collided, we got stuck. But we held on. I am not dumb or worthless; you never said I was. My own voice — the one my history molded — said I was. But you…… You loved me fiercely in those moments when I was slipping away. In your beautifully flawed way, you gave me room to put my oxygen mask on first. And that has made all the difference.

I see you. I know you.

I love you.

Always, your best friend.


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