I see her walking alone. Her head drooped low. Her back is laden down with a hundred burdens. We are walking the same way, but our footsteps are spread apart. I feel the sunshine on my face–a time of joy for me. But her hair is wet with sorrow–a time of pain for her.
My footsteps slow. I know that our proximity is no mistake. I approach her slowly, the trail of tears making heavy indentation on the ground. I could remember a time I felt the same.
My mind is transported to the darkness that was—after many years–overcome by light. I gather the stinging, yet hopeful memories to my heart and stand beside her with a gift of companionship. I am ready to offer.
She looks at me with hollow eyes, and yet the depth of tragedy is deep. But I have hope and I know hope is in her. It just needs a way out. I reach for her hand and she doesn’t reject me. It is cold with stiff pain. I can remember the feeling.
I hold my experiences before her and gently show her the way of hope. I speak Truth and give comfort. But she shakes her head and walks away. Her hand grows colder. My gift to her is not taken. I feel loss immediately, but know I can’t give up.
Days pass by. She has not left my mind. The coldness and pain have left an irrevocable imprint on my heart. The girl with the hollow eyes has started to forfeit hope and nurture a distrust for everyone. A month goes by before I see her again. I am adamant, but gentle. I know I can begin to bind her wounds with friendship. I want to help her fill the hollow with hope.
She does not let me stand very close and her eyes are harder than before. I offer my friendship again. She starts to speak–a ragged sound. My eyes are the genuine window to my heart. There is no malice or fake compassion here. Yet before she pieces the sentence together, her mouth snaps shut, lips turning blue. She’s gone.
My heart is broken. She would not let me bear her burdens.. I couldn’t share in her sorrow and offer her seeds of hope. The rejection stings deep within me and I feel drops on my aching skin. A friendship within reach but not received is difficult, indeed.
I continue to walk the beaten path. Life moves forward and so must I. Not even a week passes by and I see her empty footsteps of loneliness on my pathway. I follow in determination. Maybe, she will accept my care this time. Perhaps, she will let me share in her pain.
My hope expands and I long to give her this friendship that I’ve held for her for so long. The gift feels heavy in my heart, and I ache to give it to her.
I see her hunched low to the ground, but then she sees me. Her recognition registers and she bounds to her feet. I yell to her, “Please wait!” She continues to run. “Please, I want to help you! I want to be your friend!”
But she runs and screams over her shoulder, “I don’t trust you. I never will. I don’t trust anyone anymore!” My heart breaks and I let her go. My hair is soaked with sorrow. My tears drip sore. I only ever wanted to share her burden. I only ever wanted to become her friend. Rejection cuts deep and I am torn.
Years pass by. Rich life is lived, sorrow is carried, and joy is born twice over. But I never see the girl with the hollow eyes again. She gave up something priceless. She gave it up, before I could give it to her. She refused to trust. I only ever wanted the best for her, and oh how I still do! But I’ve never see her since, and I never will again.
Dear, not everyone has bad intentions. If you spend your whole life refusing to trust, then you are robbing someone of the gift they want to give you.