Eventually there comes a point, when you go on and on avoiding something or someone, and just snap-and go right to them. Like the poor dog who doesn't want to go to the man, afraid that he might be hit, but wanting attention more than anything else; or like a person on a diet absolutely confident that this candy bar will be the last; or like me, scared to come into contact with anyone who I think has hurt the people I love, or who will hurt me.
When you run back to that thing you've been avoiding, like a lonely pup with her tail between her legs, you-in this scenario-are rewarded. The treat has been given: a pat on the head, a nice talk, some confidence-boosters, and all is good. It reminds you that some people are good, and family is not all infected. You don't need any elaborate lunches, any shopping sprees or whatever, just each other, lots of things to talk about, and hours of time. It becomes difficult to leave. This person makes you feel so good, and not many other people can do that, so walking away is like getting up in the early morning-you can barely lift the blankets.
This person inspires the positive in you, knows how you're feeling, why you're feeling it. But everyone you know is in a different sphere of the world: there are the ritzes, the cheapos, the friendly and the fraud, the gentle and unsociable, the teenage angst, and the five-year-old darling who stands up for her 22-year-old sister on graduation day.
Then there is you. By which I mean me. The recent grad., ready for road trip but not really, very worried, wishing her boyfriend wanted her more, terrified of what happens AFTER the road trip...unsure of what is right or wrong to say, to think, to do-not only around the boyfriend, but also around anybody else, worried that she isn't polite or professional enough, that she can't dress the part, that she needs to meld into the normal in order to survive, and she wants to believe this one person, not her mom, not her dad, not even really her family, that these are not all bad things, that they can be quite useful, and not everyone needs a prescribed path.
She feels much better, a little less afraid, some plots in mind. The anger is not so much there as it was before. (She drives home in the dark, might have hit an opossum, tries hard to ignore that thought, the images, the guilt-reminding herself that it wasn't her fault, she tried to dodge it-and remembering that soft crunch under the tires.) She will try to sleep, and may struggle to do so, but tomorrow will be calmer. She'll sleep later, and write when she gets up, and will send the person some writing exercises to do. Then she will go home to her boyfriend, and maybe they'll keep each other warm.