People who do not love themselves can adore others for adoration involves making others big and themselves small. They can desire others for desires arise from a sense of incompleteness. But they cannot love, for love is a reflection of the living growing being within one. 
- quote adapted from Andrew Matthews

Was this quote particularly apt in his case?

He had always thought highly of the people around him - his friends, his comrades, his family. Even his tortoises. It felt as though everyone - except him - would go on to lead paths of such brilliance that their names would live on in history.

It'd come as no surprise, the successes they achieve, the accolades they win, the praises they receive.

It was true that he didn't love himself. Not much anyway. He was always secretly hoping that he could be someone else. He wanted to be his painter friend who wasn't any good at painting but still went around telling people that she was a 'painter'. He wanted to be the guy who updated his FB status with the picture of a bowl of cereal. He wanted to be that classmate studying Accountancy or Literature or Chemical Engineering. He even wanted to be one of his tortoises - to eat salads every day, laze about in a plastic tank and be able to hide in a starburst shell.  

Yes, he wanted to be everyone else - including a tortoise - and, yes, he was his harshest critic. But could he - maybe just some times, maybe just once in a while - be his faithful supporter?

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