After so many years, the same mind stricken question is always “Why?” For everything. Why did you have to walk into my life? Why did we have to become so close? Why did I have to open myself just to be shunned away? Why did I have to believe our friendship would build years and years of memories to come? Why did our changes have to change ‘us’? Why can’t we just hold onto what was good? Why was there never any mutual effort? Why can’t we leave the past in the past and move forward? Why does it feel like you could care less about me? Why can’t I just forget you?
Here is my open letter to you – my friends who are now strangers.
Yes, people in life come and go – those good and bad. That is Life. In many ways I am able to grasp that so easily, yet in others I am entirely beside myself. Because for me, it was so easy to be friends. No matter the bad times that seemed to crash in like waves, the changes I endured, or the moments I questioned our friendship – there was that part of me that always held on. And wanted to.
There are times I blame acceptance, and then times I blame others, and you. All the while I can’t help but overall blame myself. In the midst of losing you, I felt I was simply becoming a ticking time bomb of a failure in your eyes (unknowingly), and you were just finding it easier to not accept me. It was easier to allow our friendship to fizzle out on the back-burner as others seemingly more important came into our lives. Like our friendship once was – shiny and new. But mostly, I blame myself. First for seeming completely in the wrong, but now I blame myself for tolerating it all.
Now into my adult life, I can’t help but believe the only reason for our estranged friendship is from simply choosing to allow it to become that. We believed that because our lives were now busy, ever-changing, or others coming into our lives – it meant our friendship would ultimately and naturally come to an end.
Because of you, I learned that’s not the mindset of a true, valued friendship. As in any relationship, a friendship is a choice – encompassed by mutual effort, understanding, communication, empathy and forgiveness. Where time apart and life changes are no dictator – if we were meant to be friends and stay friends, we would’ve equally made it happen one way or another.
Are there times I wish I was able to let go of my pride, just to contact you and know how you were doing or to get together? Yes. Are there times where I wish you could simply do the same? Yes. But then I am instantly taken back with fear – the fear of rekindling the rejection you’ve made me feel. And whether I made attempts to sparking the fire of our friendship that ultimately failed, I am at least left knowing that I tried.
And I can live with that.
I still know at least one thing is true – I still care about you. I know that if I were to hear from you, right here, right now – I’d respond to you, immediately. Without any vengeance or grudge – having any of that for you is ten folds more work than our friendship should be – I’d be that someone for you to talk to or a shoulder to cry on.
And because of you, I now know what it means to have true friends.
Someone you used to know