He spots me smoking alone and staring off into space. Lost in my Spotify playlist, I don’t notice him approach until he taps me on the shoulder and asks, “Are you okay?”
He didn’t need to wait for an answer. I couldn’t speak, anyway. I just collapsed into his embrace.
“The past few months have been really kicking my ass,” I confessed once we settled down to dinner. “I’ve been so depressed. I can’t sleep well, I either overeat or eat nothing at all. I keep staring into nothingness in the middle of conversations. I don’t feel like myself anymore.” I took a sip of my shake and continued, “Nothing’s going right. My love life, work, financially… It’s all going to shit. I feel like such a loser. I had all these plans, and now I have nothing.”
He chewed on his pasta, a thoughtful look on his face. “I dunno what to tell you. You know as well as I do that I’m crap at advice.”
“I don’t need advice. Advice means I can do something to fix this. There is no fixing this anymore.” I sank back into the wicker chair. “I’m just feeling so down.”
How I missed this: letting my guards down completely, speaking with raw emotion, without fear. I blinked back my tears before he saw them. I may have been emotionally honest with him, but I am still loathe to cry around him. “My life is going nowhere. I’m such a fucking loser.”
“Hey, I don’t make friends with losers,” he said, sounding slightly offended. “You hold yourself to such a high standard then spiral into a depression when you don’t meet your own expectations. It’s fucked up. Cut yourself some slack. You’re the only one saying those awful things about yourself.”
Later that night, after throwing back pitchers of frozen margaritas and piña coladas, we started walking. With the roads deserted, we fell into a comfortable silence.
I sighed into the night sky. Tomorrow was another day, another chance to feel like a miserable failure who constantly makes mistakes. Who can’t get anything right.
But with my arm linked in his, I started to think that if this wonderful person thought that I was good enough, then maybe it really is true. And maybe the biggest mistake I was making is not believing in myself as much as he does.