I spoke to Blue today. She was lonely. Her words were firm in expression of being fine. She was miserable. She had a good day. She was vulnerable. She was busy. She was overwhelmed. She really was fine. She felt the burden of the world on her shoulders. My heart wept, as I sensed so much more, and her inability to express it to me.

I saw Blue tonight. I tumbled into the back seat of a strange car, and introduced myself to her friend from school. Immediately the familiarity of her hand reached out, and finding mine, squeezed. And upon squeezing, did not release more than the slightest of pressure for the entire trip.

That action said more than simple words ever could. Blue knew. She needed me. I knew of unspoken emotion. She lived the harshness of life. I was there for her.

And nothing could change that moment for either of us.

Just a small sampling of what I've experienced via empathy:

The pain and other emotions of critically injured soldiers at a military hospital near where I used to live (possibly one of the worst).
The "dust" left over from a murder in an apartment I was going to rent (good thing I didn't).
Exactly what happened with the USS Lexington. That was fun, going up all those stairs, although none of us could bear to go into the main engineering section.
When my friend's child was born (a mix of emotions).
When my neighbor upstairs gets high as a kite, and when the ones nearby fight.
The terror of a death row inmate (ugh!).

I don't mind having this gift but sometimes I don't know how to shield myself well enough so I don't go to pieces and guzzle a massive pot of coffee at the first opportunity.

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