For the next few days I felt low. Me and Ryan weren’t talking much because he was knackered from working, and walking and coming back to this. We weren’t arguing and continued to be a rock for each other, but it was hard and I was worrying about it.
I raised the subject one evening, and he told me I should go home.
‘ I don’t want to ‘Go Home”.
‘ I’ll stay here, I’ll keep working but you go and wait til Iv got us out of this mess.’
Oh. I thought.
He thinks he is the reason we’re here.
He thinks it’s his job to get us out of it.
I realised the pressure he must be feeling, he probably thought about giving up everyday but couldn’t for fear of letting us down. Admitting defeat.
I leaned into him and gave his arm a squeeze.
‘ I’m not leaving you behind Ryan.’
He looked up at me and his eyes had that glaze of sadness. It was hurting my soul seeing him so downbeat.
‘ This isn’t your fault, we are in it together.’
He looked down again.
‘Aren’t we?’ I asked, trying to get a reaction.
‘ Yeah.’ He paused. ‘ I just feel shit. I should be providing for you. Buying you nice things. Making you happy.’
‘ I am happy’ I replied. ‘ I’m with you.’
Darkness fell around us, and as the last cars left the CSA behind us, we felt the peace of being alone again. I rested my head against the window and noticed the sky was clear.
‘ Ryan look…’ I pointed upwards.
‘ You can see all the stars!’
I dragged him outside to sit on the kerb and look for a minute. He complained his back was aching but looked up anyway. I leaned against him to take some of his weight but he pulled me closer and leaned his head on mine.
‘ It doesn’t matter that things are shit at the moment, they will get better. We have each other. All that other shit ain’t important.’
He smiled at me and we watched the stars. For a moment we forgot that we were living out a car. We were just us. Looking at the sky like we’d done a hundred times before.