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Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Aftermath

I am having a hard time starting this post, not just because my thoughts are so jumbled that it makes it difficult to find words, but because this post feels a lot like the high dive on Memorial Day. Every year, on the first day that I went to the pool for the summer, I had to march off the high dive or I would be immobilized by it for the rest of the season. I didn't need to ever go off the high dive again for the remainder of the summer but I knew that if I didn't force myself to jump the first day, I would spend each day after staring at the board and worrying about the board and thinking about the board.

And now that I know that she reads my blog, I feel this need to write tonight--not just to place closure on the earlier post--but because if I didn't, I would become self-conscious overnight. It's not that I blog everything in my world, but I don't have many walls and I was scared that I would start building them if I considered who was reading. And I never want to have walls. I never want to have my arms up, holding people at bay.

I cried. A lot. It was amazing to sit across from her again. She looked so much like she did 14 years ago. She is very beautiful--smart and matter-of-fact. I didn't really walk away with an answer. I was promised that it was none of the reasons I've believed for the last 14 years. At this point, I don't really know if I needed an answer. I did the work on my own; came to my own space again of feeling comfortable with who I am. I wasn't seeing her again because I wanted her to feel guilty that I was so upset--I truly hope that she didn't walk away from tonight with a heavier burden. I can't deny that it was very hard to lose her friendship, but my intention is not to wrangle it back and then place the weight squarely in her arms to carry. I simply wanted to revisit my past. To sit with someone who knows this piece of me that no one else knows.

I was worried that I would get oral diarrhea tonight, tell her about the blog. But early on in the conversation, she let me know that she had read the entire thing. From start to finish, or in actuality, from recent to past. This happens, of course, a lot. A person I never knew was reading admits that they know all about the turkey cutlet or the pee bucket. It's my choice to put it out there; to write about my life. But it is a strange playing field when someone knows these pieces of your life and you know nothing of theirs.

And then she let me know that long before I started the blog, for the past 14 years, she has kept up with my life. Through mutual friends and the local grapevine and news here and there. She has known all of the major events that have played out over the past 14 years. And on one hand, isn't it the story we all want? That the person was close the entire time, just standing in the wings, silently supporting us. Isn't that why we believe in life after death--that the person never truly leaves us and somehow still knows what is happening as our life continues to play out. And at the same time, there is a terrible bittersweetness to it. To know that she was so close for so long and didn't step forward. I am not sure if she truly knows everything that happened, but as she said it, I had this film on fast forward going through my head of all the times I have needed her for the past 14 years and wondered how many of the scenes she already knew.

It isn't really fair--it isn't her job to step forward and catch me. There were others who were there when she was not. Life has a way of doing that, of filling new people into the gaping spaces. But still, it makes my life feel a little like a Where is Waldo scene and if I look closely at the commotion, I'll find her in the background. And it both makes me feel comforted and even more distant.

I existed today on a diet of Tums and Tylenol and while I still have a headache, there is a buzzing that has stilled. Perhaps I needed one last big cry to serve as my closure. But seeing her has wiped off a film that rested over how I viewed myself for years after the break-up. Everything seems neater, shinier, organized; as if I have taken back whatever I left behind. And now we can move ahead.

I've written this before reading the comments on the last post. But I want to thank you for them. She mentioned them when she sat down and knowing that all of you were out there helped more than the Tums and there is a story that I will tell tomorrow about my cousin when my head is less fuzzy. Right now, I need to go cuddle with Josh. To kiss the twins. Before I left, I asked myself if it was worth it to go out and miss tuck-in. I never miss tuck-in. But it was. Getting that closure was worth what I missed.

Thank you--J--for answering the email; for sitting down tonight.

48 comments:

nancy said...

I've been waiting for your "report" and I'm glad you wrote it tonight. I totally get how you'd feel without it being written.

I do wish you got the answer though. Something so dismissive as what happened deserves an answer, in my opinion of course. But as long as you are now happy with the outcome, that's all you need, right?

~hugs~

Bea said...

I'm so glad it went well. I imagine it was quite the little earthquake. Someone turning up like that, out of the blue... I'm glad you got the closure you needed.

Bea

Just Me. said...

I read your earlier post and I have to say that I'm really glad it went well and I'm on that road cuz I've just lost my BFF. It hurts like hell cuz she doesn't seem to understand what I'm going through.

Will we catch up again after 14years? I dont know.

Anyway, am really happy for you and I think in time to come, maybe I'd like to have some closure of my own.

(((hugs)))

Lori said...

Exhaling.

I like the Waldo image.

Stacie said...

I am glad you got back what was left behind. I am glad you got some closure. I am even more glad that you can now move forward.

Thanks for the update. I was thinking about you all evening.

Annie said...

It's not even me and I still let a big sigh of relief out when I read this. I'm glad you got something good from this, even if you didn't get a full answer or explanation.

((hugs))

Vintage Mommy said...

Wow. I'm glad you're feeling better, though I don't think I'd be satisfied without some sort of explanation.

Funny, I was thinking today about a friend I parted ways with several years ago and never knew what made her so angry.

The relationship wasn't nearly as significant as yours with your friend, so I was able to let it go.

Mel, you and your blog have been such a wonderful discovery for me; you seem like the most generous and kind person in the world and I'm sorry someone hurt you so much.

Cassandra said...

You are so brave, Mel.

Something seems very strange about her having read your whole blog, considering that you have written about her before and she never contacted you. Better late than never.

Brenda said...

I second the other commenters. You are one brave lady. It would have been much easier to simply close off that part of yourself instead of opening the wound and meeting face-to-face. I am sorry that you didn't get an answer to your question, though. Perhaps in the end it doesn't matter. What matters most is that you heal.

Jen said...

sometimes there are things in life that you just can not let go of and to have the chance to do this, is amazing. I commend you for your bravery to face it & I hope you got the answer you were looking for or at least the closure. I kind of wonder if my old friend feels like you. If she needed closure or if I ever meant to her what she meant to me. I feel a bit of sadness tonight, for you and for my old friend.

I saw her sister once & she told me "It was silly that you walked away from her, I wish yall would patch things up. She really misses you and the friendship you had." That was so many years ago, I doubt it would be true now but you have made me think...I don't know if I should write her a letter or let it go.

Thank God you got the chance. And I have been checking my blog roll all night to see if you updated. I was thinking about you.

And God does provide support even when we don't know its there. She was there with you, even from afar.

luna said...

I'm glad it sounds like you got what you needed. not sure if its closure or a reopening, but either way.

battynurse said...

Wow. Sounds like an incredibly emotional day. Hugs to you.

musicmakermomma said...

Thank you for your beautiful posts, I've been reading a while now. You really are a most wonderful person.

How strange that even the people we think we know best have so many secrets from us; who knows what made your friend sever the relationship - maybe now she doesn't even know. It is good you met with her and saw that you are whole even with the big chunk missing from your past. Sending you good thoughts.

theclam said...

I'm glad it went well Mel. Sometimes that closure is so worth it.

You're in my thoughts.

xxx

'Murgdan' said...

I'm glad you made it through to the other side tonight...and yes, putting it all out there can be strange at times. I don't think anyone I know or used to know has found my blog. Sometimes I want to blurt it out to the world, other times I want to hide my head under the blankets.

But anyway, I'm glad you got the closure you needed to move on.

katd said...

I'm so glad you reported back; I was thinking of you. It's funny, too, how many of us have commented back about having gone through something similar - whether because of IF or distance or whatever. It's so painful.
I'm very glad you got the closure you needed. Sorry that you missed tuck-in:), but glad for your peace of mind.

N said...

I'm so SO glad it was worth it.

loribeth said...

I've never gone through a "breakup" with a female friend, but there are lots who have gradually drifted out of my life. I know it's impossible to keep in close touch with everyone, but I miss them sometimes -- while still being thankful for the good times we shared. I'm glad you had the chance to meet again & mend some fences, even if all your questions weren't answered.

BethH6703 said...

exhaling with Lori

and glad to hear that you came thru to the other side, and can move forward from this space a brighter, shiny-er version of you.

Amy said...

I admire you, Mel! For some reason, I feel very involved with this story, I'm not sure why. Whatever happens, I sincerely hope that you are comfortable with the outcome. Whether you remain friends or whether last night's meeting was just that -- a meeting -- and it results in nothing more. ((HUG))

Dora said...

Have I mentioned lately what an awesome writer you are?

Bittersweet. Yes.

Big hug! Cool that she knew we were all with you in spirit.

Tash said...

Now I'm wondering how many Waldo's I'm missing in my recent past.

Wine goes well with aspirin and tums, ya know. Well, sort of. Virtual hugs to you.

Manda said...

I'm so glad you are able to breathe again. I'm also glad that J knew how many people were with you - watching out for you - during your rediscovery.

Rachel said...

That must have been emotional, I can't even imagine. Thank you for sharing.

Somewhat Ordinary said...

I'm so glad it was worth it. This post brought me to tears

Journeywoman said...

I've been reading both posts. I've broken up with friends and been broken up with. It sucks on both ends.

I'm glad there was closure. I'm glad she was cheering you on.

Grad3 said...

Sometimes not getting your answer is your answer-- if that makes any sense.

I hope that Josh and the twins were able to give you the safe place you needed after being so vulnerable. ~Hugs to you~

Jamie said...

I can relate to both of your posts on so many levels...

It is hard to lose a friend. It is difficult to endure things that you thought they would be with you for. And it's difficult to blog openly, knowing that there are people out there who read your blog but you know nothing about them -- including if they are a reader.

Thank you for being you. For putting this story out there and being willing to blog as openly as you do. You touch many lives, including the life of your friend.

Emily said...

I am just now catching up on both posts, but WOW! Talk about rocking your world!

I think we have all been there to some degree. My breakup only lasted 2 years and we were able to pick right back up where we left off and have never been closer.

I know it is not that way for most though...

Sending you big huge hugs today!!! It's a lot to process.

Kristin said...

I am so glad it was a good meeting. A breakup like that would be so heartbreaking.

Kim said...

Wow. Way to put it out there. I am glad you got what you needed.

Jess said...

I'm happy that it went well and you're getting some closure.

Will you be friends again? Or is it over?

I'm sorry you didn't get an answer. I agree with Nancy, it deserves an answer.

MrsSpock said...

I think most of us women have some semblance that a relationship with a spouse is not always as set in stone as a relationship with a female friend we've known since childhood. Divorces happen every day, but we don't often divorce our best friends. That's what makes it so hard.

Cara said...

Good for you, for going, for embracing the lack of clarity, but most of all- for achieving the closure you were looking for.

((hugs))

Samantha said...

You have a lot of courage to go meet a friend whom you haven't seen in 14 years, especially someone who ended the relationship so mysteriously. I don't know if I could be satisfied with not really knowing, but on the other hand, 14 years later, it probably really doesn't matter in the same way.

Road Blocks and Roller Coasters said...

I'm glad that the meeting went well and that you have some clarity now. ((HUGS))

serenity said...

I'm just catching up now. (Bad Serenity.)

It is sort of amazing how the wounds from the past never fully heal when you have no closure. It happened to me - a very close friend broke off our friendship in early high school, and to this day, I remember exactly when it happened and how hurt I was (I still am, actually).

I went the opposite way, though - she tried to contact me through myspace or something. I just can't talk to her. I have nothing to say. Nothing to gain from it, other than hurt.

Anyway. This is a long way of saying that I think you were courageous to meet up with her. And I'm very very glad that you feel more of a sense of closure now.

You rock, you know that, lady? :)

xxx

astral said...

You did it! I'm very proud of you for going!! I do think it is odd that she followed your story for all these years and knew of and read your blog, but she ended your friendship. I would like to have had an answer. That's just me. You are a beautiful person and as long as you are happy (and true to yourself) with who you are--you will be just fine!!

beagle said...

(It seems from here) that the closure you gained was worth the risk you took in meeting.

You are brave.

But, I, we, already knew that about you.

;-)

Polly Gamwich said...

How painful.

I'm sad that you didn't get answers, though it sounds like somehow you got closure ... so I guess I won't push for answers just b/c *I'm* curious.

Well done ...

chicklet said...

I give you credit for going, because for me, if I wasn't getting an answer, I wasn't going. I know that I'm greedy that way but if I wasn't going to get an answer, for me it'd just dredge up more and I wouldn't have been able to do that. So good for you that you went and it worked.

Faith said...

Hugs to you. Sounds like you got what you needed, and some of what you wanted, too.

Infertility Warrior (aka Patrice) said...

Beautifully written. I have an ex-best friend out there too. It is so sad and strange to be so close and then so far from someone. Thanks for your post.

kate said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
kate said...

I am so pleased for you that you got what you needed from your encounter with your friend. I now imagine you to be a much more mentally healthy person than me, because I would have gone ballistic if someone had told me that their reason for randomly and viciously slicing me out of their lives was none of the things I imagined, worried and fretted over for a decade, but rather some other mystery reason which will never be revealed! I already feel my head pounding just thinking about that kind of scenario with my old friend.

Of course, that is probably why your friend agreed to see you and why I am still not talking to mine. You rock, m'dear.

Piccinigirl said...

I'm so glad you went, I'm so glad that the outcome was a good one, some closure, the cry.
You really are very brave for doing it and I'm so glad that it helped close a hurt even a little.

Vacant Uterus said...

Snatch, I'm just catching up...I'm really behind on posts these days because of all the drama.

I'm glad the visit with your friend was good, even if you didn't get any answers. I'm glad you got closure and you are now able to see yourself more as you are--amazing, full of grace, gifted and beautiful. I'm sorry your friend ever left you to start with. But I think in the intervening years you've made many friends who value you very, very much. And I hope that helps, even a little.

xxoo

Io said...

I'm glad it went wellish. That you got something, if not everything.


I'm glad I don't have to cut a bitch.