Life Counselor #2

(Reed’s Playlist for the day: Dazed and Confused by Led Zeppelin)

C-Quat and Tenacious D… the best “how I met you” story I could have. 

Hey there.

I keep writing sentences and then erasing them, because I don’t even really know how to begin this. I guess it’s hard to believe that we could have become such close friends in such a short amount of time. Is that just college, or is it because we’ve got something special? I’m gonna pretend it’s because we’ve got something special.

I’m afraid sometimes you don’t realize how important you are to me. Like, when you tell me you’re too clingy, as if I wasn’t just as clingy. And honestly my heart is hurting for you right now, because you’ve done so much for me and I know your situation is stressful, and you really don’t deserve it.

So maybe you can read this and understand that, in some small stupid way, it’s worth it to keep on struggling, because you do so much for the people you care about, and we really appreciate it.

Like how you taught me to not be embarrassed. It’s not like I needed a lot of help with this one (clearly), but still. Your exuberance of expression made me feel more at home than many of my quiet friends could ever do for me. Your laughter taught me to laugh more, to let stress come out in a way that is joyous and healthy.

You taught me a work ethic. I know it sounds weird to say, but besides myself and Neuro 102, you’re the only person I attribute that to. Our study habits were so bad, our struggles so real, that going through them with you made me realize (and I think you too) how much I wanted to change. I know if I’d been doing it on my own I wouldn’t have seen that need to change.

You taught me to be aggressively nerdy. You showed me how to love a fandom fully and without fear of judgment (well, mostly without fear of judgment). You let me be who I was, and you loved me for it.

You were the first person I felt comfortable with talking about some of my real, serious problems. It didn’t matter if it was family drama or friend drama or even my self-sabotaging my relationships – you seemed to always be there. And how you survived those hours of rants without exploding at me and calling me an idiot… well, I don’t think I’ll ever understand.

And speaking of which, you taught me to rant. You, more than anyone, taught me that at some point, it’s okay to just let it all spill out over somebody else, and that it’s not unhealthy to do it if it’s mutual. You’ll always be my rant buddy 😀

But there’s one thing that is most important that you taught me, and I don’t even think you’re aware of it. You taught me about the choice to drink, and how it’s not as black-and-white as I made it out to be. I was so frightened sophomore year in the summer – that first time you decided to get drunk with us, I know you remember it because I keep bringing it up – and I remember thinking to myself, I know people who drink are degenerates, so how is it that my best friend in college can be doing this?

You showed me that drinking and using recreational substances is a choice, and like any choice, it comes with both positive and negative consequences. You showed me how important it is for everyone to make their own decision, and never to feel pressured by others into making it, nor judged when they do make it. You showed me how wrong I was for judging people who drank, and you were one of the first people to make me feel comfortable in the scene after all my friends started drinking.

We’ve shared so much – Led Zeppelin, crazy late nights, ridiculously epic D&D sessions, and the entirety of our college experience. I feel like I know you better than I know myself in some ways.

That’s why it hurts me so much how stressed out you are. I can’t tell you everything’s going to be all right – God, I wish I could – but I want you to know I’ll always be here for you. When you need a hug, or a rant, or just someone to abuse for a while (c’mon, we both do it), I’ll be here. Fuck whatever you think about how clingy you are; even after we move away, you’re not going to be able to get rid of me, and that’s a swear (on Harry Potter).

I love you. I love everything about you.

Bye Terry! (…Bye Sheila!)

-R.R. Buck


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