My Uncle lives on the other side of the world. I’ve seen him perhaps a handful of times at most my entire life.
On his latest trip to our side of the world, my Mother and my Uncle visited. They stayed elsewhere, thank goodness, but they came over to my house and we sat around and we had some kind of meal or another.
My Uncle asked me how I was doing. I replied that I was exhausted. My Mother snapped back with something along the lines of you don’t look exhausted, and my Uncle responded with “because she knows how to put on a face”.
In one sentence, with a family member I realistically hardly know, my entire life was summed up. He proved to me in that moment that he saw me better than my mother ever did, and likely ever could.
And damn if that doesn’t fucking hurt.