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I think, if anything, I would like to blame my self confidence. Or, well, lack of it for that matter.  I can truly believe if I wasn't putting on a charade of myself, he'd be captured. 

No, no, thats all wrong. I change my mind. It's because they didn't like me. I can't blame myself, I blame them. But wait. Hold on one second. If they didn't like me, then thats, what, maybe five or six people who make my life a living hell, but that shouldn't compensate for the so many that make me laugh. No, I blame confidence. If I actually had some those things wouldn't matter. Then how did I come to loose my self esteem?  Well, not the whole thing. Maybe just part of it. Maybe only the visual part, the part people see and use to label me and pin me as those "unusual types" and then once again i can be an odd ball.

But they why doesn't he see it? The little red flag wildly flashing signals to not get involved with me because I am trouble. I am an emotional sinking ship and I will drag anyone who reaches out with me. And yet, he still likes me. Maybe. He called me original, marked with no degrading undertow what so ever. And he smiled. I couldn't smile back because my smile looks fake. It looks forced because it is, spread tight and thin over my unkissed lips. 

I didn't see him for a long time after that. My world remained gray.

It became finals, a time of stress and tense shoulders. It was gray, in fact, it was raining. I was alone and walking home ignoring the fact little cold spheres of diseased pollution drops trying to invade my personal space. He appeared from the rain. There is no other way to describe it. It was me, and then it was an umbrella and me and him, all in one personal bubble, and somehow he made the gray no so lonely. And so we walked. Not to a place, not in a time, we merely walked. 

We walked and laughed, and there was no awkward Mary looking in from the outside making me a miserable socially awkward no body. There was so much life flitting between the two of us my subconscience couldn't possibly fit. Everything defrosted.

Tension dissolved and my shoulders relaxed, and for the first time in a long time a smile warmed my face. I was glowing on the inside.

I remember looking over at him. He was calm. He was at peace with himself. I wished I could be where he was. He wasn't hiding anything. What I saw there on that rainy gray day, was Ghila Usem. The complete and unabridged version that no other person could ever be.

I'm proud of him. As I was that evening. It takes a lot of courage to be fully open with who you are, and I knew people saw that.  People walk in his shadow be get a peice of that unique so hard to find courage. I never saw anyone tear him down the way they tore at me, and I wasn't even me! I recall walking home that evening, I made the promise I would become me. 

I wouldn't define who I was on images. I needed to dig deep down to find that small frozen seed, and give it a boost. Reopen that silenced shell and grow happiness with real roots. I vowed to find my long lost self.

The End

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