I met you a little over two weeks ago, but you’ve crossed my mind every day since. At first, I thought your tears were simply manifested frustration for missing your flight– we’ve all been there.
You sat down across from me, and then apologized for crying. I told you not to worry about it– that we were in airport and standard societal rules don’t apply. You walked away for a bit but you came back, and asked if I knew where an outlet was. They were in the seats right in front of me. You sat there and plugged your phone in.
You couldn’t get it to charge. I saw you getting more frustrated and upset. I’m not sure why, but you shared with my friend and I that you were trying to get home to your parents, that you left an abusive girlfriend and that it had been one of the worst days of your life.
At first I just said pretty generic things like, “you’ll get home!” and “I’m so sorry.” But then, after a few beats of silence I told you that I’d been in an abusive relationship before and that I know how hard leaving is, and that you are brave, and strong, and absolutely doing the right thing. I didn’t divulge mine was just emotional abuse– I’m not so sure that matters because none of it is okay.
You then started to cry harder, but smile a little. I asked you if I could hug you. After our hug I asked if you needed to use my phone since yours wouldn’t charge. You called your parents and let them know what was going on with your flight. I had to board my flight shortly after.
I tried really hard to get on an earlier flight that day, but there was no luck. I am not sure if I think everything happens for a reason, but I do think I was meant to meet you in that airport terminal.
I hope you made it back to your parents. I hope you stay away from the abuse. I hope you know you deserve better. I hope me sharing my experience, as minimal the information I offered up was, gave you a little of bit of hope and some strength to make the decision again every day going forward.
The Girl You Met at the Atlanta Airport