I saw an old friend today: a friend who once upon a time happened to be my best friend and today I was reminded of why. Nothing ever happened to create our distance, we just lost touch. Ecstatic to reconnect I did wonder if we would pick up where we left off, and for whatever reason wasn’t too worried that we’d have little in common.
Life happens. People live it and they go through the motions so much so that they forget the people they meet along the way. We become victims of routine and get lost in our comfort zones. In reconnecting with my friend I felt a hole in my heart fill with joy and a feeling of completeness. I’m not even sure I knew this hole existed.
After giving one another the kind of hug you give a loved one after years of being away, we sat down and got right to it. She asked me what was new. Knowing that we’re both the kind of people who do not beat around the bush I replied, “which do you want first, the good or the bad?” She laughed and said, “Yeah, right. Whichever you’d like to share first.” Not only was this interaction the antithesis of every fake interaction I’ve been unfortunate to have endured throughout my life, but it was home. There were no games. Perhaps our ability to see through one another allowed our honesty to just flow, but I think there was more.
In life there are very few people who will stand by your side and support you without judgement. It’s almost as if they’re an extension of your personality, a piece of your soul. They support your successes just as much as your mistakes, and you don’t walk away from your encounter feeling naked and worried you might have revealed too much.
In a world where it seems that our appearance dictates our actions, it was beyond refreshing to experience this rare type of interaction. It was real. This person saw the little girl and adult in me and loved both pieces unconditionally. She reminded me of my strength and didn’t frown upon my updated insecurities that evolve as we do.
I walked away rekindling a kinship I once lost. I suppose I could be mad at myself for all of the lost time and frown upon all the times I could have reached out to her when I so desperately needed a friend, but I’m too happy to beat myself up. We interact with so many people throughout our lives that it’s no wonder we absorb negativity and pick up bad habits like being our own worst enemy. We don’t realize that this behavior is learned and that we’re merely acting out unhealthy relationships with ourselves. Not everyone clicks, and when people try to continue a relationship when one is not meant to be, friction is inevitable. Rather than acknowledging our differences we blame one another and try shaming the other person into conforming to the person we see them as, not the actual person that they are. I’d say we don’t know any better but the truth is some of us do. Maybe these actions aren’t attached to malicious intentions but some of them are. The point? Today I was reminded that nothing was wrong with me. Yes I have my imperfections and make mistakes but who doesn’t? When it comes to relating to other people I no longer feel responsible or accountable for people who simply do not understand me and speak my language. It’s funny, I always considered myself to be an open-minded individual and still do, but over the years I distorted that perception into an unhealthy action which led me down a dark path. I tried changing who I was for the people I thought got me but really didn’t. I lost myself along the way as I tried to please others.
In the spirit of Thanksgiving I have much to be grateful for, and one of those things is listening to my gut and following it when it reminded me of a blast from the past whose friendship was meant to last. Had I been stubborn or too busy to reach out, I would have missed out on something special and one of a kind. I would have never looked back and realized that I had left my best friend behind.