I’m not telling both sides of this story.  There is much more than just what I’m writing that happened here, but I’m only focusing on one part of it.  Please accept my apologies if it doesn’t seem to include everything here.

 

I opened a small box a few days ago.  Inside it contained a few old letters, scraps of notes, and papers.  A rubber band around an audio tape, a matchbook, a ribbon, a couple of fortunes from fortune cookies, and a red net bag of marbles.  Unless you’re me, you don’t get why I have them.  The most important people in my life in the past have the smallest boxes for remembrances.  I guess it’s because the fact that they are so present in my mind’s eye, that all I need are the very most important things to hold onto.  Going through this particular box, I was grateful that it was so small.  For the memories inside are so dear, and are so very tainted by the fact that I no longer really have any sort of relationship with the person that they’re from.  Except for the memories I have.

To me, 15 years ago, the decision was not easy, but effortless.  My friend and I were at odds about so many things at the time, and my friend was very much in not the best of situations.  The world that they had been able to create to insulate themself  from everyone’s expectations didn’t seem to meet with their own for themself.  And all the turmoil was being directed at me, and not in a good way either.  So, there came an impasse where our relationship seemed to hurt the other more than help, and we stopped having one.  My friend and I were not in the best of situations either.  We were both making decisions that I am sure are still effecting our lives in good and bad ways to this day, and where we would normally seek each other’s counsel and support for those decisions in the past… we weren’t anymore.  So, when things came to a head, a simple disagreement coupled with a misunderstanding led me to make a startling decision.

It would be better off for my friend, if I had no sort of contact with them anymore.  Me, who usually fought so hard to hold onto friends, and to work so hard to wade through troubles and trials with others, allowed my friend the space and time they needed to become who they thought they needed to be.  I also walked away from our mutual friends and comrades, telling most of them that I didn’t want it to be a friend choosing situation, and that my friend needed to feel everyone was on their side and to get their support…  I just walked away.  And I lost my closest friend in the world.  Someone as close as blood, as close as a lover, without the complication of that type of relationship.

Today it still feels like I lost a leg, or lung, or eye, or hand.  There is something integral to that type of loss that messes you up.  I can only speculate that it must be like losing a spouse, or a child.  And there is a song from Melissa Etheridge called “the letting go” that talks about that kind of loss.  I sort of sat inside that song for weeks and months after that.  It’s funny that when I hear that song, I can only think of the great times that my friend and I had over the years.  It’s the only time that I can smile when I think of them.

Ever since then, I think when it has come time to try to fight for relationships, during trials, during conflict, I find that I give up fighting much sooner than I did when I was younger.  I’m no day at the beach to live with I’m sure.  But I have steadily lost a little bit of myself every time I lose another friend since.  It hurts to think about such things, but that’s what happens when you open up boxes you haven’t seen in 7 years.

However, I found something that makes me smile about my friend.  They gave me a bag of marbles during an especially emotional moment, when we had to go about our separate ways years before the big departure.  They said that I needed to hold onto their marbles for safe keeping.  Amidst all sorts of hugs and goodbyes, they said they’d be back for them.  And yet, I still have them.  Sitting in my memory box in my living room.

I smile thinking that I’m sure that they’d like to have their marbles back.  Life is tough enough without losing your marbles.  But, I also think that they gave me in their weird way, extra marbles to hold onto, when life gets rough for me.  Just in case I start losing mine.  And I smile again, remembering the love and friendship I once had with them.

 

thanks for the marbles, as soon as I find my fairy dust, I’ll meet you in Neverland.  😉

 

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