Instead of looking away, I let my gaze stay there with hers. No one said a word. It was scary ground to walk on but I felt brave that day. Brave because I was so afraid she would see something inside of me. Something that would prove I shouldn’t exist. For behind my eyes, all those walls I’ve been putting up and hiding behind no longer existed. It’s just me there — a window into what I’ve experienced in suffering, fear, and confusion. In those few moments, her eyes saw that, as if a glaring spotlight shown upon my wounds.
And she wasn’t scared of it. Instead, those eyes met mine and I no longer was alone. As we lingered there, she, peering into who I was, told me there was nothing to be ashamed of. It was okay to be where I was… to not know… to long for something else… to be afraid. It was okay to be human. To be me.
I don’t think I’ve ever looked into someone’s eyes as deeply as that moment in time. In that experience I learned something about myself and about my relationship with other people. It’s okay to let people in. When you’ve built up some trust and have a deep history together, genuine connection, understanding and insight can happen. Sometimes all it takes is a glance that says, I see you. I’m in this with you. We’re in this together.