Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Letter to a lost friend

You said you were capable of it.  I didn't hear, because I didn't want to hear. 

I only knew a friendship that was reconstituting a part of me long since dried up.  I had a reliable confidante next door.  We shared keys and secrets.  From the beginning, it was easy to talk to you, to let my guard down.  I didn't have to do the suburban mom cover-up smile.  Even if I tried it, you would see right through.  With humor and keen insight, you would pin me down.  I loved being known so well. 

And I knew you, or so I thought.  I guess we only know a person as much as that person allows.  Maybe your cover-up smile was there all along.  So, who are you?  Who is this person who knows my deepest thoughts?  Who were you when you came to my bathroom and helped me stop crying long enough to put on my makeup so I could go to work? 

You said that you were capable of running so far into your work that all else would disappear.  No wonder you struggled so long with the decision to return to work.  We both agreed it was a defense mechanism.  Ever the optimist, I said it didn't have to be that way.  You could work and keep it in perspective.  I didn't consider that I would be one of the disappearing items.  I didn't consider that you like getting lost. 

I have always understood why you do the things you do.  When it makes sense to no one else, it makes sense to me.  You have a right to privacy after enduring such violent invasion.  You have a right to control and independance after being subject to a ruthless ruler for so many years.  I defended you when others looked down on you.  Because I get it. 

I just didn't know how fragile and precious our connection was.  I didn't know you would suddenly and drastically change.  After years of supporting each other through high and low seasons, after tremendous laughs and tumultuous tears, after thousands of rapid text messages, abrupt silence.

Now I can't come home without wondering what is going on with you, with us.  I can't step out on my deck without a pang of regret that we don't sit out back any more and share a drink and a sunset.  Anger grows larger than sadness that it all turned out this way.

The worst part is that you think I can be dismissed so easily.  I know you well enough to know that there is more to the story than "busy and depressed".  That certainly never stopped us before.  I am sick of guesswork, of wondering what I must have done wrong.  I'm tired of reaching out and getting a pitiful patronizing pat on the head.

The only thing I can apologise for right now is wishing that your house would sell.


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