The Bond

The Bond

I met her a few years ago. I had only been in Seattle for two weeks when she arrived at my door. We spent some awkward alone time chatting about mundane things and I didn’t think she liked me. At the time, I didn’t think anyone really liked me and I was fiercely protective of the shredded remnants of my heart.

She was so smart and talented and lovely and I just knew I’d never measure up to her or the other people in her life. Nevertheless, we embarked on a mutually cautious journey of getting to know each other. I wasn’t her mother, her sister or her aunt, but I hoped that someday I could be her friend and she’d be mine.

Over the past few years, our paths have continued to cross. I’ve spent time with her over the holidays in LA, here in Seattle when she visited for a couple of weeks and also on a trip to Paris. We’ve played music together, cooked together, walked, talked, shopped and laughed. And after a slow and steady process of getting to know each other, we began to develop a mutual sense of trust between us.

This morning, she texted me about a situation and I offered my opinion and advice. I never expected the conversation to take the turn that it did, which left me crying like a baby. I cry virtually every day ever since the trauma, but rarely tears of joy.

She told me “I always feel like I’m venting to you. I hope this isn’t too much of a one-sided relationship.”

I replied, “Actually if I can be honest, I love our friendship. I appreciate that you even want to hear my opinions.”

That’s when she said, “You are an empathy queen!”. She sent me a drawing that she made of figures sitting around a table with names over their heads. I was surprised to see that I was sitting next to her at the table. She said, “That’s my table. When I make big decisions, I usually consult these people.”

The tears flowed and I thanked her for having a place for me at her table. When I told her she was exceptional and that I admired her, she told me the feeling was mutual.

It may sound insignificant to most, but this is another step toward recovery and regrowth. I was sure I had failed life a few years ago. But it turns out I was just in the wrong life with the wrong people.

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