bringing something we must learn.
And we are led to those who help us most to grow,
if we let them.
And we help them in return.
I have had a friend for almost twelve years who is now more of an acquaintance. We became neighbors when our sons were about 4 months old and her family moved across the street from me and mine. We made quick work of our friendship, hanging out in each other's yards and kitchens. We even went through our last pregnancies together ten years ago. Our children also became almost inseparable, running across the street when they were babies to see each other, even at the risk of being punished by mean mommies who were trying to protect them.
A few years ago my friend decided that she needed to sever ties with me. She was working on healing her life from many different injuries and I ended up being one of them. It has been a while now and luckily my memory of this time has faded a bit. I remember the email telling me that she felt strongly that my friendship was somehow hurtful. That I made her feel bad about herself (thus the purging). Months passed and we made up and all seemed well, until it all happened again. Again, after some time we were friends again.
Like a comet pulled from orbit as it passes a sun.
Like a stream that meets a boulder halfway through the wood.
Who can say if I've been changed for the better?
As my family started to experience growing pains (and I struggled a bit letting go and adjusting... just a little bit), there were very few efforts toward support or concern. I let it go. Not everyone is on the same level with empathy, right? But then there were obvious times when I was avoided by her, in public I mean. I assumed there was insecurity or even resentment toward me because I was usually happy and well-adjusted. What could I do about that? And honestly, what could she do about it?
But because I knew you, I have been changed for good ...
Eight months ago it was me writing the email. Something's not right. You can't seem to get over feeling unhappy with me. Let's be honest. This friendship is over. There was no response, which didn't surprise me. We faded into a different kind of association. This will be permanent, and it's ok. The boys are still friends, which matters to me, but that's it. Where there used to be phone calls and laughing there is the occasional wave from her passing car. But somewhere deep down the sad part is gone and I have settled in to it. She had been important to me, and I would take those good things with me. All is well, and I realize now that not all relationships are meant to be lasting. Some come and go, changing us for good in the process.
*lyrics taken from For Good from the musical WICKED