In my Resignation and Addendum posts I mentioned that I heard from S (old friend and previous partner) the other night and that I was open to a cautious friendship with her but nothing more. As the day went on after writing Addendum, I realized why I woke up feeling so low that morning. It was frustration and anger with S about how she ended up calling me again and also sadness about knowing that I would be letting go of her completely.
Yes, completely. And knowing I will finally have closure with her (from her?) has lifted a weight off me that I didn’t realize existed.
I was quite surprised when she called two nights ago. If the caller ID had shown up in her name instead of her daughter’s I would not have even answered the call, but honestly, it’s good that I did. Because it gave me to the opportunity to see some truths even more clearly than I had been starting to anyway. It gave me to the opportunity to truly see some things that several friends have pointed out to me repeatedly but I was willing to overlook—the blinders were ripped from my eyes. It showed me how little we have in common, how much differently I live my life. I’m not at all saying I’m better than her, just that I choose to live my life in a more positive light.
Shortly into the phone call, I asked S why she decided to call me. Turns out I was basically her consolation prize, her second pick. She was sad and lonely because she can’t go visit her daughter for a while so she called me. Would she have called eventually anyway? I don’t know and it doesn’t matter. The premise of her call is what really matters, and it didn’t happen for the best reason. Her reason for calling was ultimately shallow and hurtful and whether it’s from her or anyone else, I deserve better.
In talking to S it became clearer than ever that the few things we have in common aren’t enough to sustain a strong friendship. Our past, our mental health issues, both of us being on the queer spectrum—those are no longer enough. They haven’t been enough in a long time. It also became unmistakable that the difference in the way we each live our lives is a huge stumbling block. So often I feel that I don’t have much of a life. My fibromyalgia and mental health get in the way of the life I’d love to live. But over the course of our two-hour conversation it dawned on me that even with my limitations, I live circles around her. I honestly feel bad for her because she is so bogged down in life. And I don’t say that in a mean way, I sincerely wish she had more life in her, that she would fight harder to live better. But it also doesn’t mean I have to be dragged down with her. Part of a friendship is to support each other and I can’t even imagine how she and I could be on equal footing in that respect. And then there is the fact that as far as I still know, she does not believe in my/our multiplicity. A pretty major deal-breaker.
Even though it feels freeing to be bringing closure to our relationship, it’s also sad. We met nearly 26 years ago in a psych hospital when we were both seniors in high school. Her daughter and my older son are just three months apart in age, and when our three kids were very young they were practically raised together. Even when I was forced apart from my own sons, I helped her raise her daughter. We were in a romantic relationship twice and nearly a third time. We’ve seen each other go through a lot and have travelled through many of those things together. We’ve shared a lot of life!
I will always want the best in life for S. I will always send petitions to the universe (and Gloria prayers to God) that her life will become more of what she wants it to be and that she’ll be truly happy—let it be! I know I’ll have moments of missing her, missing the past, wishing things could be different. But I’m glad it’s finally time for moving forward and letting go.
~Kali (with input from Cait)