I wonder where you are. If I could tell you how much you changed my life you would be really surprised. I have told my husband about you. He thanks you too!
I was a very vulnerable teenager. I was a challenge to my parents. I was depressed. I was lost. I was on the cusp of rebellion but I didn't have the guts. I just screwed up a lot. I couldn't put a finger on it at the time but something was really missing from my life. Me.
I met you. You were a good, good person. You had your own challenges too but something was different about you. You were stronger, I think. You were one of the most gentle and kind people I have ever met. You were fragile in your own way but you concealed it well. You excelled in most things. A proficient student. A skilled athlete. A volunteer. A friend to many. A lover of animals. A conscientious employee. An acrobat. A leader. A believer. A steadfast young teen with dreams to escape poverty. A son of a mother who was an alcoholic. A son of a father who was absent. A brother of a deceased toddler. A survivor of child abuse. Alone you were.
I didn't know at the time how many odds you had beat already. I didn't know at the time how much I had taken for granted in my own life. I didn't know at the time how lucky I was to have the parents I had. I didn't know at the time how lucky I was to have you in my life. You led me in a different direction. I didn't know at the time how to accept your generosity of heart, your wisdom, your encouragement, your fondness for me. I just didn't know.
Instead, I just mistreated you and let you down like everyone else did in your life.
Your only living relative was your mother. You wanted to pull her out of poverty one day. You wanted to save her. You wanted to make her proud. You did. Only, it was too late for her to be saved. What sadness and tragedy you have experienced.
I am so happy you have found a wife. A mother to your children. A person to love you whole. We were young kids back then but I still remember.
I thank you a hundred times over for believing in me at a time when I didn't believe in myself.
Thank you wherever you are.