I feel like a failure. No form of failure is as devastating to me as a failure to communicate because I was supposed to be a communicator.
I’ve always enjoyed friendships, especially yours. And at the core of what makes friendships worth it for me is how they make me a better person, make me grow, and make me see my flaws. I attribute that richness to my desire for unfettered and honest communication in any friendship. Vigorous discussions and challenging conversations are the gardens where bonds grow.
Those that I have superficial conversations with, I do not boast of deep, unique, and memorable relationships.
Even when I push my position hard, I never wanted to be mean. I never felt that making my friend like me is more important than giving my honest opinion, even when I am wrong. And I am often wrong. But because I believe that I am conversing with my friend, I do not fear when I am wrong. I do not fear to say something, even if it would sound as if I do not know what I am saying. After all, I am talking to my friend.
With all my flaws and weaknesses, they all disappear in the safety of a conversation with a friend. I will worry about my grammar, accent, and poor and often myopic reasoning with strangers or mere acquaintances, but not with my friend. That is how I have always seen friendship. I have found security in the safety it provides. My sense of awkwardness disappears in the confines of friendship.
Never in that warm embrace have I desired to judge my friend or feel that my friend judges me. Never in the comfort of friendship do I feel that I am not good enough or that my friend is not good enough. I see no way friendship can live and thrive with those contradictions. Never in the course of friendship do I feel that my friend is targeting me or the preposterous alternative — that I am targeting my friend. That is absolutely counterintuitive to what friendship is to me.
My capacity to be a friend will not exist if I feel insecure in friendship. And I believe friendship itself will vanish if I make my friend feel insecure. That situation will definitely groom fear and not friendship. In an environment of fear, friendship cannot take root, or if it did, it will dry up and die.
I believed that I know all those.
It does not mean that consciously or unconsciously, I could not have been doing things that inadvertently create in a friend an environment of fear, awkwardness, insecurity, and a sense of feeling targeted, judged, and not good enough.
For that, I am very sorry. It is absolutely not my intention.
I have had my share of arguments and heated discussion with men and women that I considered lesser friends than you. I have never felt this bad. I have never had this sense of failure to communicate with those who do not know me as much as you do.
At this point, I don’t know what to say. I don’t feel qualified to process this feeling from this point on. I desperately wish to escape it. But I know that if I go away to escape something, whatever I am going away to escape follows me.
I wish I can hang around and confront it because by confronting it, I understand it, learn from it, and become a better person because of it.
But I realize that it is not up to me. Sadly, it is out of my hands.
If you don’t remember anything else about what I think of you, please remember this: you are the Africa that we are fighting for. You are too talented, two endowed with Africa’s wealth and wisdom to allow the little myopic opinion of a small mind like me to irritate you.
It is no longer healthy, and as such, it is not worth the trouble.
You deserve better. And you will get better.
You will not have me to worry about.
Having said that, you are too important to the cause of achieving the African of our dream that I will never give up cheering for you. I will be on the sideline, where you may not hear me, still cheering you on.