“Kaleidoscope: an instrument containing loose bits of colored material (such as glass or plastic) between two flat plates and two plane mirrors so placed that changes of position of the bits of material are reflected in an endless variety of patterns.” That is the definition of “kaleidoscope” by Merriam-Webster. And it describes my relationship with you perfectly. I see you, but not clearly; I only view fragments of the full, complex person you are. And you don’t see me: the girl hidden behind a piece of glass. You don’t even know I exist. But ever since I’ve known of you, my life has been full of jagged edges and blurred lines, drenched in brilliant, blinding colors. My life with you is a kaleidoscope.
As nice as it would be to sit down and talk about specifics (all the details of your observable life), feelings have taken precedence over facts at the moment, and you have inadvertently caused me to feel much more than any man a decade and a half older than me should. When I first saw your name, written out on LED backlights, it was surrounded in words that could make any sane person’s stomach turn in revulsion. I hated you. I wanted to see you fall from the highest of heights, and watch delightedly as your image shattered against the cold concrete floor of the world. Oh, how my younger self would have basked in the so-called glory of that sight! But time is married to knowledge, so of course, in a year all of that came loose, like the poorly sewn thread it was.
Never would have my younger self ever conceived of defending you, but that is what has taken place. For a girl so bent on believing liars are a part of humanity’s worst, it’s interesting to think that I could have contributed to the success of one. Because everything I once believed was false. And that taught me one of the most important lessons I’ve ever learned: do not immediately believe what one is told about a person, no matter how convincing, until one has confirmed the validity of the claims. Perhaps it’s better phrased as, “innocent ‘til proven guilty,” as if we are in a court of law. This was a lesson I needed to learn, and while it might have taken fourteen years of my life to sink in, you were the vessel that allowed me to understand it completely.
Even now, you’re still present in my life. Little glimpses of color remind me of yours, and anytime I hear some claim about someone, I make an effort to see if it is proven, instead of blindly believing it like I would have in my younger days. That’s what you taught me, and I want to thank you. I want to thank you, but despite time’s passage, your name still burns me. I don’t say your name, but yet I do. And to you, the person who has changed my life without ever saying a word to me, I am eternally grateful for the lesson you helped teach me. May the rest of your life be better than it was before I met your name.