Tuesday, March 11, 2014

A shot at redemption

T-10 days until I board a plane for Miami, dragging my pale skin and winter-worn smile to bask in the light of warm weather and friendship. This is no ordinary trip, but a reunion tour with one of my oldest and most important friends. Yes, this is the friend of my heart that I haven't seen or spoken to in years. Yes, we have been in contact.

In weird ways, it's as though things never changed, that the five years we spent out of each other's lives simply erased when we met at the glass door of her apartment building in Seattle. All of the sadness, hurt, bewilderment and anger that I think we both felt got crowded out by a feeling of coming home. She looks the same, has more gorgeous children, her sweet and hilarious husband is the wonderful guy I was friends with for years. We sat and drank mimosas and talked for hours before they packed up to go be Seattle's 12th man.

And this has all made me realize that I hate things that are unfinished. I used to think that the best/worst thing I could do at the end of a friendship or relationship was just to simply remove myself from the other person's world. But the truth is that it's painful, these unfinished things. It's harder to lose someone to living than to dying. Bereavement is different when what you have lost is walking around in the world.

The hardest thing to tease out is what keeps you from taking the plunge of reconnecting. Mostly it's pride, I think. At least that's what kept me from my friend for years. Pride and not wanting to be the first to extend the olive branch. That and the very real likelihood that things had changed so radically that it would never be the same. Or, like in so many other situations, it can't or shouldn't be the same. It's something impossible to know. It's only by making yourself vulnerable and by understanding what you are trying to resolve in your own heart that you will get to what you need.

Sunshine, cuban food, so many memories at the ready. Wish us luck.

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