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Goodbyes …

3 Apr

It was like the ending of the Breakfast Club, but without the cool music.

Although we deserved it. We deserved all that good 80’s music.

A buddy of mine recently decided to graduate and move onto bigger and better things. Packing up her bags and setting her sites on new adventures, a Guardian of the Galaxy type of quest. The very next week, I find out that an amazing blogging buddy of mine Cayman Thorn over at Drinks Well With Others has decided to close down the bar for a while and live his life to the fullest, blog-free, although he promises to check in from time to time.

This double whammy made me think of all the other buddies I’ve lost to the follow the-yellow-brick road journey. Sometimes it’s slow, losing touch is like that. Some relationships were meant to be novelas in length, others short stories. Both deeply meaningful, both leaving their mark.

But both saying good-byes in different ways. I’ve had buddies say so long with a big dinner, speech, scrapbook maybe even Facebook promises. And then others, like my buddies in the blogging world, some disappearing slowly with less and less posts until there are no more and others leaving you with one last farewell story, the kind that involves a pause … a moment.

Both departures made me think about the positives I got from each encounter. The laughs over corny jokes during traffic on our way to meet friends for Saturday morning brunch, or the boosts in confidence after reading his comments on one of my many stories. Both buddies made me laugh, both made me feel good about being myself, and both of them were just awesome people I was glad to have met. After the bummer-you’re-leaving shock slowly wore off, I was hoping they had some good memories of our conversations and outings as well. I was hoping I gave as much as I received. I was hoping I made them laugh when they needed one, gave them a high-five when they felt like they fell short, and brought them sunshine when it storming down on them.

I was hoping they learned something from my friendship as I had learned from theirs. That’s something they don’t really teach you when you’re growing up. That after a break-up with a boyfriend or girlfriend, or after a friend moves to a new city or new endeavor, it’s still a loss. But one that ended on a positive note. Nothing hateful or worrisome or ugly about losing a friend to something better, something they were looking for, something on their yellow-brick road. You feel a twinge of hurt because they’re leaving but also a warmth in your heart, because they’re on their way. You feel like Red at the end of Shawshank Redemption. At least this was how I felt.

So in honor of their new beginnings I write this post for them and for all the other buddies that have moved on and set their sights on a new city, a new adventure on their way to something different, something bigger, something that gives them purpose. For Lame Adventures, Blissful Adventurer, 50 Year Project, BrickHouse Chica, The Strugglers Handbook, Mikalee Byerman, This Man’s Journey, Chica Writes, Apple Pie & Napalm, Alicia, Monica, Sandy, Lisa, Clara, The Other Lisa, Vicco, Jonathan, Doc, Talia, Rizza, Jarre, Anthony, and Patty

Buen Camino, my friends wishing you luck! I’ll be here if you change your minds and want to hang out.

 

 

Awkward and Messy Isn’t For Everybody

2 Jul

I was in the middle of a conversation with someone I considered to be my friend when it occurred to me … well … maybe they’re not that close of a friend.

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Maybe they’re not worthy of the awkward and messy parts of me, because when I gave it to them they judged me … and it was a turn off. I think I’m a pretty open person, private about some things, but pretty open about failures, obstacles, and successes. The longer I know somebody, the more I let them in. I think some of my writing buddies here got to know different parts of me if they’ve stuck around for a while, conversations and comments being exchanged and all builds a camaraderie. You get to find out what we have in common and we make a connection.

And we build from there. I build trust. I thought I had.

It’s good to have a friend that tells you the truth, you need a friend like that during hard times and good times. But you also need a friend you can trust, someone that sees the awkward and messy and broken down parts of you and doesn’t judge you.

It’s the tone in their voice and the words that they use, it’s when they place you in a category that’s not you, and you think to yourself … how weird that after all this time they don’t know you … they’ve been around you and you hung out for the last decade, you’ve shown them all of you, and when you needed an ear, it turned out they weren’t listening but projecting their own issues on you and judging you at the same time.

It was weird … in the middle of the conversation I found out that we weren’t that close to begin with, and I guess that’s all right. I finished my salad and sandwich and didn’t speak much about my concerns or current issues. I just listened to hers and then ended the lunch with a good-bye wave.

Sometimes people are on the acquaintance level and never move up, even when you’re brave enough to show your imperfect parts and are in need of a friend to lean on … sometimes they’re not the right listener and you find out the hard way.

And that’s all right, that just means you narrowed down your circle of trust and they’re not in it. But the people that are … they get you. And most of all you get you.

 

 

 

Weekly Photo Challenge: Partners

30 Jun
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🙂

 

Sometimes you have to consult your partners to find the perfect Lego.

 

 

 

 

Weekly Photo Challenge courtesy of The Daily Post

 

 

I Wish I Had Lost My Keys Instead …

4 Mar

It seemed like such a big deal at the time. Anxiety building and blood pressure probably rising, getting mad at a pair of shoes because they happened to be in my line of vision.

I was in a rush. I was frustrated, and irritated, and damning everything, and slamming everything in an effort just to find them.

I was in rush to go somewhere, probably being a taxi service to my kids for some event and the loss of my keys was stressing me out, transforming me into The Hulk. For nine minutes I frantically searched and finally found them underneath the couch cushions of course.

Relief set in just as the anxiety escaped.

It felt like a big deal at the time  — being late– as if it said something bad about me, as if it was a pattern in my life, as if the people we were meeting  or the place I needed to be at wouldn’t have cut me some slack. But the thing is now as I’m thinking about it I can’t even remember what is was for, I can’t remember the importance of it at all.

But it felt big.

Until last week, when I actually lost a friendship, not to sickness or anything tragic like that. Just lost them to the hustle of life.They had caught  me on the blindside and I wasn’t prepared. How could I be? I know I had briefly mentioned it the other day but didn’t go into heavy detail.

I had called to catch up and I was genuinely interested in hanging out, but the reconnect wasn’t there. Felt like I was on an awkward first date on a failed Love Connection. The distance was present which made me a little sad because I valued our closeness, I valued our friendship and loyalty but it just wasn’t there anymore. We had fallen into acquaintanceship. We said our good-byes, gave each other our hugs, mine was whole the other felt like half, and then they said …

“I’ll call you later.”

At that moment I so wished I had lost my keys instead.

They had good intentions, but I knew they didn’t mean it, it was just something they said.

I know people grow out of friendships and that people come in and out of our lives for a reason. I know,  I just wished there was more sometimes and that people cared as much as I did.  But sometimes life happens and priorities shift and we’re all just trying to find our balance. Not to say that I don’t have friends that I haven’t seen for a while and when we get together the reconnect is instantaneous. I do and I love them, but losing a buddy to acquaintanceship is still hard. I wasn’t devasted but still just a little sad. Burned. Luckily Ben & Jerry’s can always help fix that.

 

 

You’re Not Alone … Stress Happens to Everyone

26 Feb

I thought there wouldn’t be anything funny about finding out that a friend had disappointed you. I mean, really broken your heart because you thought you could count on them, but then you realized that the only good part of the friendship was you. You were the good friend.

You had misinterpreted their understanding of what a friendship was based on.

So where’s the funny in that? Where’s The Wish Factor that’s going to help me get through that. I’ll admit. I struggled a bit.

But then I saw this and I realized that someone out there understood exactly what I was going through and accurately described it as stress.

 

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Yup. Confusion is difficult to handle.

This little incident has helped me thoroughly understand the meaning of stress and how the urge to turn into a main character from a Quentin Tarantino movie  is normal when you go through such a problem.

So … you’re not alone. Stress happens to everyone.

 

 

No Really It’s Only My Second Glass of Champagne, But This Is My Fifth Brownie

24 Aug

I got it again.

I didn’t really know it was missing, until I felt it come back. It was sort of dormant I guess. For about a month. But I got it back. I got my groove back and it felt good, the kind of good you felt when you were a kid, back in the old days when cassette tapes, Op Shirts, Vans sneakers and Jack Tripper existed. Yeah … I had that.

It came back to me at my friend’s 40th birthday party.

I was there to celebrate this milestone, this Big 4-0 that all us are experiencing this year, and I came away feeling grateful for her friendship and for the presence of all my girls, my comadres.

They gave it back to me. They woke it up … my groove. And they didn’t have to do anything, they were just there. They were present … they were the Shirley to my Laverne.

I walked into this Love Boat-Magnum PI-Gilligan’s Island-Fantasy Island-Luau type of party, and even though I walked in without my nautical or luau attire, for some reason it had gone MIA about an hour before I left and nobody knew nothing, there was still a good feeling, an instant smile, a feel-good vibe.

They didn’t care what I was wearing, they didn’t care that I was still the Chapstick type of girl who wore sandals instead of high heels, they just cared that I was there.

The thing is, with this group of ladies, these comadres, they know that there may be a lot wrong with me, but to them there’s a lot more that’s right. That’s what they see.

And that felt good.

My kids see that in me all the time, but it’s good when someone else can see you that way too. Someone who doesn’t watch Doc McStuffins or Star Wars Clone Wars.

So as you might have imagined, we celebrated this festive occasion the only way comadres can. We laughed, we danced, we talked, we remembered, we celebrated we let our freak flags fly and fly high. The DJ played tunes from our college days, and we of course hit the dance floor as if it was our college days. I had a few flip-flop malfunctions from all my Solid Gold dancer moves, but I continued on. And as people trickled off the dance floor, I continued to feel the music and work my groove. Then I noticed a girl at the party, smiling and chuckling as she watched me and my awesome dance moves.

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🙂

I walked over to the coffee table, finished my drink, headed over to her, smiled and said …

“This is only my second glass of champagne.”

“I don’t believe you,” she said smiling back at me.

“No really, it’s only my second glass of champagne,” I insisted. “I’m running on me. This is all natural right here, baby. But this is my fifth brownie.”

I grabbed the brownie from the table, raised it up and took a bite.

She smiled and I headed back to the dance floor.

I ended up having three glasses of champagne that night, and eight brownies.

It was a good day.

Got my groove back and touched my soul thanks to some of my comadres.