Relationships. UGH! That’s right, ugh. Whether they are family, friends, or co-workers ~ relationships are hard work.
I expect to work hard on my marriage relationship…I signed up for that. And so far, excellent results…finally. Third time is a charm. I am going with I grew out of the ‘crazy’ I had been indulging in prior to meeting him, AND I had climbed out of the rabbit hole I had been using as a place to live.
Family – the one you were born into…but didn’t officially “sign up” for. However, there are those who believe we pick the ones we need in order to resolve any past life issues for our families. If that is the case, I can consider mine ‘EPIC FAIL’. Really, I will pick better next time. Honest. And one can always create a new family to be surrounded by when the “epic fail” occurs. I have done that well also. At least I believe I have.
Friends – now these are tricky. Especially given that we tend to ‘pick’our friends. As children we learn who wants to be around us….sometimes the reason might be influenced by another child and/or adult, but it might be as simple as liking the way that child/person behaves toward you. That’s the one I have used to select my friends. And yet, I have allowed one to behave badly.
We get all types of messages about who we are or can become, by our friends. Friends can be anchors in a stormy sea of un-lovability. Friends can rein you back in when you are about to ‘jump’ before looking – that is, if we trust them enough to ask their opinion. Friends can save you from yourself, (ie, taking your keys away when you are clearly too drunk to drive, telling you your spouse is unfaithful or you are going to die if you don’t lose that 100 lbs), that is if they are brave enough.
Friends are those whom I want to celebrate my successes with. One hopes that a good friend will also be available to be sad (or mad/happy/frustrated, etc) with you – or at least, acknowledge your feelings and allow you the space to experience it/them. My expectations about my friends are few…truly. I expect them to treat me kindly, with respect, be honest and mostly – be real.
I recently realized I had become “categorized”, as in ‘put-into-a-specific-box’, by someone I considered a friend. OUCH! In reviewing the past 3 years, (yes you read that correctly) I now clearly see the signs that I was in fact neatly ‘boxed-up’. ONLY to be brought out and enjoyed, should the occasion “arise”. The box is marked thusly: Good for tea/scones/books/garden topics only. (My hindsight is a perfect 20/20.)
I did wonder why I wasn’t introduced to the “man-of-my-dreams”, or invited to share a meal and ONLY be seen when conveniently timed. Yes, the signs were there. I am a smart woman. However, I still didn’t want see or read between the lines when I was “informed” that going anywhere with me just wasn’t going to happen – but, with this recent sign, I was beginning to suspect that not everything was on the up and up in the woods. But I was willing to wait it out, largely due to my ability to be wrong on multiple occasions. In fact, I was NOT trustworthy enough to pass the “let-me-into-your-everyday-life”…WOW. Talk about holding a resentment.
It was the end for me when an invitation to visit/eat/sleep and meet “man-of-my-dreams to a mutual acquaintance as having been extended. (Strangers. Met through me. Online. You have to love ‘social media’.) Photos appeared. Again, OUCH. A lie was told. OUCH. No acknowledgement. OUCH!
It would have been ever so much kinder to just rip the Band-aid off earlier. Or become willing to “LET GO” of the past…and become OPEN to the possibilities of something new/different/better.
My part in this? (And yes, I am having a hard time recognizing my part.) I am a believer in the 50-50 of life. Clearly the fracture began 10 years ago, my fault then. CLEARLY my apologies were never forgiven, FULLY. Was I willing to make amends? Yes. Was I excited to be back into the arms of my friend? Yes! Was I too presumptuous? Yes, apparently I was. Did I fail to make the right amends…apparently so. Did I fail to recognize the pre-fab box I had been deposited into….YES.
Am I mad? Nope. Sad, yes. It is sad when a friend turns away.
This time I climbed out of the box and willingly walked away. I deserve better.
Bless you. Heal me.