It's beautiful when you start to see someone's walls slowly come down and they begin to trust you with the big stuff.
When they let go of the face they put on for everyone else out in public and show something beneath the surface.
When they look at you with wide eyes that say, "Here. I'm going to trust you with this," and you can see the hesitation in their eyes, like they've been hurt before and are scared to risk it again. And you wish you could make them believe you would never do that.
When they tell you a story it feels like they've never actually said out loud, struggling to find the words without losing it. And you want to wrap them in a hug and tell them it's going to be okay.
There's a deep sense of pride that comes with seeing someone open up to you like that. At least for me there is. It happened today and I just feel so...honored that this friend who, up until now, had only ever been cheerful and energetic and happy to me because we'd only seen each other out in public trusted me with something I could tell they weren't totally comfortable talking about in detail. They let me see a side that I'd never seen before. And I feel like I must've done something right (you're welcome for the Relient K reference) for us to get to this point when I wasn't totally sure I'd be let in.
What happened today also made me think about my Reformation and soccer brothers. How they insisted on loving me and taking me in even when I wasn't sure that was what I wanted. How even on the days when I convinced myself they would never really be my friends, they were there proving me otherwise. How they never got tired of waiting for me to feel comfortable when they could have decided my nerves and insecurities weren't worth the trouble.
I know what it felt like to have my walls come down and it turn out okay. No, to turn out beautifully. There's a unique kind of freedom in having someone tell you, "No, it's okay. Be you. Talk to me. I won't make you regret it." And I'm thankful I got to be that person for my friend today.