Relationships are the source of life’s greatest blessings . . .
They are also the source of some of life’s greatest wounds and here’s the fun part, those wounds, they can only finding healing in community.
I know community is a blessing, even for this, finally, self-acknowledged introvert. I rejoice to see what God is doing in the lives of those around me and I grieve with those who walk through difficult times. Today, I am weary. Weary of relationships that hurt and recoiling to protect a heart I know i can’t protect on my own.
I’m not sure how it seems to happen that relationship complexities seem to happen in droves. No, I realize life is messy. I realize good and bad come together but oh, some days, it just is hard.
Lately I’ve noticed an unexpected part of growing up. Life away from your childhood home is a good thing. You get new experiences, new opportunities, and, for me, it introduced me to much beloved husband. However, on the flip side, I didn’t expect the cost of childhood and adolescent relationships.
People who were my friends, I thought, those who comprised those formative years, in an almost synchronized fashion went from catching up on holidays, to cutting off conversations, to no longer responding at all. It’s one thing to deal with one such loss when you’re already considered to sensitive for this society. It’s another when they all do it inside a month. Talk about getting a slap upside the head with self-doubt and self-worth issues. It’s enough to make a girl wonder if maybe those relationships were projects, if that’s all i ever was. . .
My conscious side says that’s ridiculous but . . . old wounds die hard sometimes.
I wish I could say it was just old relationships, those are hard enough to mourn, the pain of an adolescence cut off abruptly from the present life. I wish I could but why lie when you already hide behind a penname in the anonymous world of blogging.
I’ve had two significant relationships currently go much the same way. My highschool friend and cousin recently cut off contact. Citing a desire to retreat from online things, cause anyone important can text what they need. I don’t have a cell phone. Yeah, that smarts.
The other is more complicated and the reason i’m writing tonight. I don’t know how to find the words to figure out where it went wrong, but I know he’s hurting and so am I. Maybe I’m writing more to figure out my own heart. Text always has come easier than the written. I know life changes as are circumstances do. I knew getting married would change the dynamics between my friend group. We were no longer “students” (we still are we just don’t quite live that lifestyle anymore). However, I didn’t expect the friend who encouraged us to start dating to recoil so badly, depression alone doesn’t explain his behaviour.
Where we once talked, he now actively avoids me, seeking my husband’s company alone when he comes over, his behaviour and body language telling me i’m more a time killer until my hubby’s free.
Where he once listened, being a brother and one of my closest friends, instead, he used those secrets to hurt me. Something, the friendship we shared hopes was accidental and not malicious.
There are few guys i’m comfortable around, if I’m honest, I no longer count him as one of them.
So here’s my question? What do I do?
As Christians, we are called to love. However, that love does not necessitate an active relationship. In fact, in some cases the most loving thing to do is to step away so that one does not continue to be harmful but how do you know when it is your fear and when it is simply time?
I think this musing requires another hot drink…