Monday, June 11, 2007

Moving On

I have had discussions with several people this week about friendship. We talked about how important it is to have people around us who will enrich our lives and make us better people. At the same time, we are there for those who need us and to do the same for them. We laugh. We joke and play. We cry. We support one another and create memories and a foundation that give us stability for those times when we need strength.
A sad part of having friends is that, inevitably, some of those friendships end. For better or for worse, it hurts when you come to the realization that the connection you have clung onto is no longer there or that circumstances have changed so drastically that it is impossible or undesirable to maintain the relationship.
Sadly, this week I did make the decision to not attempt to renew a friendship that had been on the rocks more than it's share of times. It has to be said that I was feeling kind of like a failure in friendship because I was told that "I am oil and everybody else like water". All I could think about was how I've failed as a friend, the people I've lost contact with in my life and why couldn't it ever work out with this particular person? I have been tempted at times to email her or call her up but, in all honesty, I have no desire to resume a relationship with her. My trouble is, and always has been, my guilt complex.

As I was talking on the phone with my mom about my decision, I flipped through a pile of mail on my coffee table and came across a piece of
real mail. A pretty green envelope with a handwritten address and return on it! A welcome surprise, for sure, among the numerous bills and junk I normally am accustomed to. I opened the card and read it. I started to cry right there on the phone with my mom. Her timing could not have been more perfect.
The card read: "Friendship is one of life's most precious gifts. How thankful I am to call you a friend."
My friend wrote: "Kathy, Just a quick note to say 'Hello!' I just want you to know that you are a wonderful person to be friends with, and that I appreciate you! : )"

It was pure perfect timing that she sent the card as she was not aware of what I was going through. A simple gesture and her words took away all of the doubt and self-blame that I had been made to feel. A little affirmation was what I needed to realize that I am a good friend to those who are receptive, giving of themselves and respectful to our friendship. I now also see that not all relationships are meant to be and that I am not fully to blame for the wreckage of this particular one or incidental related ones.
Although, it still makes me a little sad to think that this is the final chapter and that I am the one to close the book, I am content with the ending, knowing that each of us will have moved on and be happier for it. I wish her the best and will always love her.

p.s. thank you C.A.


Sandi said...

It is painful to end a friendship, even when you know it's right - much like ending a bad marriage. We've all had a friend like that - someone who hurts us, but for some reason we continue to try to keep the friendship in place. The hard part is knowing when to stop expending the energy on something that no longer benefits either of you. Life is just too short. Take it from an old person!

Jenni said...

I love that a thoughtful friend sent you a card like that. :)

I've considered you a friend since I was 5, and even though we don't see each other much anymore (damn geography!), I will always think of you as a friend, and feel grateful to have you as a part of my life.

You RULE. And if this other friend doesn't realize that, she can bite me!

Kathy said...

Thanks guys. And Jenni, you have always been thoughtful like that too. I have always considered you a true and forever friend... no matter how far away you are.

Love- k