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Monday, April 23, 2012

Rainy Days

Sometimes Mother Nature sets the tone for your mood.  Yesterday was a dreary day for me and the weather outside was equally dreary. 

I have been so blessed to have amazing friends in my life at all stages.  Some I still keep in touch with.  Others have been in my life for a reason or a season.  All of them, I hold dearly in my heart. 

Not until I moved to the south did I ever experience a friend (a real, true, legit friend) betraying me.  I am not blaming it on moving to the south, but I do joke that it might have something to do with it.  I've experienced it twice now.  The first one stung more than this current situation does.  Maybe my heart is toughening - which I have sort of noticed happening and I must admit, I hate it.  I like being known as the sentimental, emotional, unconditionally loving one.  I don't want to have a hardened view of people. 

The first time I lost a friend, I didn't even know it had happened.  It literally felt like it occurred overnight and in some ways, I think it did.  She was a bridesmaid in my wedding and was so wonderful to me throughout the whole process; hosting a shower for me, giving me a beautiful basket of goodies at my bachelorette party, and loving me wholeheartedly as she walked with me on my wedding day.  When I returned from my honeymoon, it was like none of that had ever happened.  I was no longer invited to cookouts, parties, or gatherings.  I heard people saying things that had come from her mouth about my husband.  It hurt and I didn't understand and I tried to figure out what had happened or why it happened, but my non-confrontational heart wouldn't allow me to question her about it. 

How do you deal with something like that?  Furthermore, how do you deal with losing someone whom you thought was a best friend when you live so far away from your family and friends already?  I had relied on her in a big way; she was a rock for me.  I didn't deal with it the best at first.  I can honestly say that I was probably depressed throughout this period of time.  I cried a lot.  I drank a lot of wine.  I gained a lot of weight.  I stopped working out.  I fought more with my hubby.  It was dark, my heart was dark.  Then, God put an experience in my life that has changed me at my very core.  The youth pastor at my church asked me if I would like to go on the teen mission trip with them.  I was elated and honored to be invited.  This week in Toccoa, GA was probably the most meaningful week I have ever spent with our Lord.  It was extremely uplifting and strengthening.

I came back from that week realizing that I needed to go to my friend and tell her how I truly felt about the situation.  I needed to open up and communicate my hurt in order for her to understand what she was doing that was hurtful. I realized that she may have not known.  I also realized that I didn't need her to be my friend if she wasn't going to do a good job of it. 

Prior to coming back to work I felt comfortable knowing that we may never be friends again.  I was finally at peace with it.  On our first day back, I asked her if I could talk to her.  She was pleased because she had been wanting to speak to me as well and the first words out of her mouth were an apology.  She also shared an excuse, but I focused more on the apology.  I did feel as though it were genuine, but I can't say that I truly forgave her. 

Forgiveness in the bible is defined as a loving act; one not far from what Jesus has done for us.  After all, He died for us and yet He has forgiven each of our sins and we are allowed to go live with him.  Colossians 3:13 states, "...Forgive as He has forgiven you."  I still need to do that.  It's not fair of me to harbor angst or negativity toward her any longer.  I'm not sure what has affirmed this in my heart, but I feel like now is as good a time as any to let her know that I truly forgive her.  I hope its not too late to resurrect the friendship, but at least we can be at peace with another. 

As far this other friend that I've recently had trouble with; she attacked my husband.  I defended him as the bible says I should - he did nothing to warrant this attack.  Now I need to pray and decide how to address that situation.  She, too, has been a good friend to me in the past.  I just need to figure out how to best address the situation.  She is significantly less mature than my other friend and I'm not quite sure the situation can be handled in a similar way. 

Thanks for listening.  I know this was a huge vent session, but my heart needed it.  I am a melancholic and choleric mix as far as personality goes and tend to let things burden me more than others do.  My husband's advice is to let it go and not worry about it.  Easy said, not easy done.

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