I’d like to think I give pretty good advice. At least, that’s what my friends tell me. I always have something to say in every situation, whether it’s positive or giving some tough love. Even if I don’t have proper advice, I crack out my cheesy jokes and I can at least make them laugh. Or, I’ll get them ice cream, because everyone is happy when they have ice cream.
I may not have been through a whole lot to know exactly how a person is feeling in certain situations, but I think I’m pretty good at getting inside their head and figuring out how to fix it or what to say to make them realize that not everything is lost.
Until the other day.
I was with my friend and he opened up to me in a way I never thought he would. He told me the saddest, most heartbreaking story about what’s going on in his life. Everything I thought was tough in my own life went right out the window. When he finished talking, I just stared at him. I was literally speechless. I took a deep breath to talk, but nothing came out. No advice. No cheesy joke. No words of comfort. At that moment, nothing could be said. He knew it. I knew it. It was silent for what seemed like half an hour, when really, it was probably a minute.
So, what do you say when nothing can be said?
You’d think being a journalism major I’d have a plethora of words I can string together to create a sentence to break the silence. But, after a moment all I said was, “I’m sorry.” Which had more than one definition. Sorry he was going through a tough time. And sorry I had nothing to say.
In a way, it was almost…..peaceful. He seemed better after the silence, like everything happening in his life was just shut off for that brief minute. As if the silence was, oddly, the best advice I’ve ever given.