Have you ever had a "person?" It's the term often used on Shonda Rhimes's Grey's Anatomy. There is no technical definition, so I'll give you mine: your person is the one who you can be honest with first.
There's a difference between "first honesty" and "second honesty." First honesty is when you admit what happened, exactly how it happened, and your reaction. First honesty is important because there is nothing left out, nothing sugar-coated, nothing guarded. It's you; your story. Second honesty, however, is the cleaned up, fabricated version. It's the reasons why, the excuses, and the not-so-truthful truth. But that person—the one who you can be first honest with—that's the person to keep around.
My person happens to be my best friend. We met two years ago and since then, we've been practically inseparable. Though we don't see each other often due to our insane schedules, we talk everyday and make it a point to call or video chat frequently. The thing is that my person is first honest. I know that whatever she's told me, especially advice, is the truth. She tries to not hurt my feelings, but even if she does, I don't care. All I care is that she's as transparent as I am with her.
At a young age, there's a fear instilled in us. Maybe it happens when a kindergarten friend snitched on us or when a sibling gives you up without a second thought. These experiences require us to have up a wall, a guard that protects us from future hurt. My person and I didn't start being completely truthful at the beginning, though. Obviously, with any new relationship, it's hard to open up. There were times when we'd argue back and forth about us being honest, but it worked because now we trust each other. I had been hurt just before she and I became friends. It took me forever to tell her what had happened, but when I did, she didn't scoff and roll her eyes. Instead, she assured me that she wouldn't betray me in that way.
The most perfect thing about my person is that she has never torn me down or let me tear myself down. She'll let me complain for a little bit, but just when I start to doubt myself or think I'm anything less than what I am, she snaps me right out of it. She's not one for pity parties or whining. And that's what makes her the best. She supports me and pushes me. Whether it's me needing encouragement to stop procrastinating or go after something I desperately want, she'll always be there to cheer me on and push me to be the best I can ever be.
Despite common belief, we need our persons. We need at least one person we can depend on, one person we can expect first honesty from, one person who will let us cry, pat us on the back, then tell us to keep being the people we know we can be. Persons don't come by seeking, they come by waiting and waiting and waiting. Then one day, someone will find you. After that moment, the rest of your life will never be the same. And lastly: Toyin, thank you for everything since the first time we met to now: every reassurance, every bear hug, and every piece of advice. I love you, pal.