“You’re worried,” she says.

“I am?” I try not to sound surprised.

“I can hear it. In your voice. Why are you so worried?”

I swallow. Gather my thoughts. “Well, I just–“

“You trust me, yes? Trust me? This?”

I swallow again, and try to think, carefully. “Yes, I do, I do, but it means putting everything else on hold, and I’ve never done that before, and I–“

“Listen.” She’s gently insistent. “Just listen. Whatever happens, I will be here. I will be here for you. Whatever you want, whatever you want to do, if it’s good for you…I’m here for you.”

I don’t know what to say. I’m lost for words. The silence stretches out, and then she asks, gravely, “You don’t doubt me, do you?”

Immediately, I say, “No!”

“Then what?” she asks.

And I tell her, slowly, carefully, “I doubt myself. I thought I should make plans, for a future, my future. What if–“

“What if that future is not the one for you?” she breaks in.

“Oh,” I say.

“Can we do this? Can we try this?”

There’s a pause, and then she adds, “I know you’re scared, I can hear it in your voice, but, what if–what if we tried this? Can we try this? What are you afraid of?”

And then, slowly, oh so slowly and carefully, I tell her what I have never told anyone before. Not anyone. Something so dark, and so sad and terrible, I never felt I could tell anyone.

She listens, and then she says, calmly and patiently, “I want this for us. I want this for you. Please. We can talk about this, or we can do it. Please, let’s do it.”

And, “Oh,” I say again. And I am amazed. Because I cannot think of anything else to say. I have told her the darkest thing I have kept to myself. I am worried of offending her with my fear, my trepidation. Yet she will not dissuaded.

“It will all be as good as it was,” she says.

And I believe her.

“I will support you in all you do, whatever you want to do,” she says further.

And I believe that too.

“Has no one ever believed in you?” she asks.

And I can still only say, “Oh.” And can say nothing further.

“You can trust me,” she says. “You can trust me, and be who you are, and do what you want to do. Don’t be afraid.”

There is no dissuading her. And I find I don’t want to. I trust her. And while I’m still afraid, and I tell her so, that I feel as if I might cry, I am at least comfortable enough to admit that, and move forward.

Moving forward is not the hard part. Trusting someone else with my future is.

But I trust her.

Because she asks me to. And because I do.