Thursday, October 7, 2010

The Value of Trust.


Recently, someone whom I have known for more than 2 decades had hidden something from me and in that process, he lied. Almost immediately, I just could not look into his eyes anymore, for fear of seeing more untruths. I made a mistake. A very grave one. I thought that just because I have known him for so long, that he would not lie to me.

Obviously, this incident had rendered my spirit destroyed. I was upset because not only that he had lied, but also that I can't believe him anymore. In general, I am a trustworthy person. However, I don't trust others easily. A person who succeeds in earning my trust undergoes several tests without them knowing it. In my own personal past, trust only ends with betrayal. A lie is a breach of trust.

I had been feeling very impoverished as far as having trustworthy friends are concerned after the passing of my soul brother, Mad. When he died, I felt I had one less person in whom I can trust my life with. He never lied. He never kept secrets from me. He was always forthright in all communications with me. He was as honest as Honest Abe. So, its only imaginable how inconsolable I was after the latest betrayal.

I admit that I am naive and that is my shortcoming. I believe that honesty is a two way street. You give it, you will receive it in return. Why am I so naive? How stupid of me! I prayed to Allah for someone I can trust and not be afraid of betrayal anymore. And He answered by me receiving a text message from a very old friend that I had been in constant contact over the 33 years span of our friendship. We met up tonight and after dinner, we had a very long chat over coffee and smokes.

We exchanged stories and updates. We laughed at old and new jokes. He told me how he has always kept a tab on my well being through internet social platforms. When the things I write about were depressing, he would worry and pray to make sure I will be okay. And when my writings get hopeful, he would let out a sigh of relief and be happy that I am fine.

But throughout tonight, what was most evident was how rich I felt in his presence. To have someone I trust to talk to. Although we may have known each other since we were 12 years old, I never really had the chance to sit and chat the way we did tonight. What a wonderful revelation to discover that we have so much in common and plenty to talk about. I didn't feel the need to explain myself to him. He was there throughout the traumatic years of my childhood. I asked him if he had bothered to search for me during our times apart. His reply was No. He said, "Why do I need to search for you when I know where you are, who you are and what you are? Anything that's written about you are lies if they are not similar to what I know of you. And I know you very well." We grew up together, didn't we? Thirty three years of friendship is a huge fraction of our age of 45.

I know I could trust him to tell me what I needed to hear. He would tell me things as they are. He told me he knows I struggle with letting things go. He also told me that I must not let this cruel world hurt me continuously. If someone doesn't understand me, he said to say, "I don't give a fuck!" In fact, he recommended I maintain that attitude with any ugly event or people that happens in my life from now on. I will embrace this attitude because I need to love and protect myself from hurt and pain inflicted on me by others.

At the end of the evening, as he drove me home, he told me how glad he was that we had that chance to chat and catch up. Due to our circumstances and work routines, our paths hardly ever crosses. But distance does not matter. Mad taught me that. Every so often, Mad used to call me from Penang just to tell me how grateful he was for our long time friendship. "We've been friends for so long, Ana..." Those were his words that keeps echoing in my head long after he has gone. Precious words that rang true tonight.

Gary, thank you so much for being there for me when I needed someone to trust. You made me feel so rich by your loving friendship and loyalty. I trust you. I trust you because you never had a bad thought or negative opinion of me. Thank you for showing me how much you care. Thank you for the affirmations that I never expected to receive tonight. Thank you for being proud of me. Thank you for having confidence in my capabilities. Thank you for listening. And best of all, thank you for your honesty. I know for sure you've always been honest with me because you know how much that means to me. I'm just grateful I don't have to explain anything to you and you would understand already.

Jazakallahu khair.

"No soul is desolate as long as there is a human being for whom it can feel trust and reverence." - T.S. Eliot

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