How many people can you claim truly care about you? I mean, not just the people in your life who are fun to hang out with, not just the people who you love and trust. But people who feel good when you are happy and successful, feel bad when you are hurt or going through a hard time, people who would walk away from their lives for a little while to help you with yours.
What was it about relationships that made you feel so vulnerable? Oh, right. A relationship. In any relationship, you put yourself out there. You exposed all of your sensitive nerve endings and your heart and you just had to hope that you trusted the right person.
The thing about surviving something truly tragic is that it changes your expectations forever. You make do with very little. You're grateful for crumbs. You make the best of small mercies. You endure large trials. You understand that life owes you nothing. You expect nothing, and when something wonderful happens, you don't trust it.