"Let me show you that you're loved," he said. "Open your heart and feel what I'm feeling. You don't have to be strong, now. Just feel."
So, through the near-tears that stiffened my muscles and greyed out all the rest of my emotions, I collapsed and just listened with my heart.
And as he held me ever so tightly and gently, a wonderful warm feeling came through me, and instead of pushing it away, I allowed it to come closer and closer, and take up space inside me like a yellow velour balloon being slowly inflated.
And I let my mind drift into it. I wasn't sure I was myself anymore, after that, and I said so. "Focus on one moment when you were you so very strongly that there was room for nothing else," he said. And I looked through my mind for one moment when I was me. I wasn't sure I could find one, but I finally did. It was nothing spectacular, just a quiet moment with a friend. I re-lived that moment, and felt the clammy smoke-blue inside my head warm with sunlight. I felt my face against a warm arm; I felt a glowstick in my fingers. I smiled, and moved deeper into the memory. I felt the game controller in my hands, and the love for the woman snuggled up against me in my heart, though I resisted the urge to reach out and stroke her hair. Hope and certainty were back, as if they'd never disappeared.
Always make a backup, lest crucial things get overwritten or destroyed. When he had no hope, I gave him mine. When I lost my hope, he gave mine right back to me.
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