‘You’re the most exquisite thing I’ve ever seen,’ he says. I don’t sigh or tell him he’s wrong or accuse him of lying. I say, thank you, which I’ve always believed is the appropriate response to a compliment, whether you believe or not. It’s important not to devalue a person’s sentiments. My mother taught me that, I think. ‘I mean it,’ he says, thinking my thanks is a no. ‘I know,’ I say. I can tell. The truth of it is there in his eyes and that half crescent smile that rises with his happiness. It breaks my heart.
Nic Addenbrooke is a freelance writer, editor, content creator, radio broadcaster, part-time poet and sometimes artist. Nic has been coming to terms with existence for years. He currently lives and works in Brisbane where he struggles to turn the cacophony of voices in his head into things of substance. It doesn’t always work but occasionally produces a nice veneer of sanity.