Buddy, Can You Spare a Friend?
Friends share secrets, feeling safe in the hearts and minds, that acceptance with be theirs, no matter what. Each of us has a few, one of them being our Father.
But, but, but, but: have you ever repressed a truth? Not a fib, a flub, or white lie, but a lapse, really. A silence of the heart. Remaining silent when pressed by a friend or family member, to spare their feelings in good conscience…
And had the silent favor returned by their scorn when they continue on their judgmental path, that you are wrong? Enlightenment might have evoked empathy for you, but at costs that couldn’t be contained.
To me it’s happened many times over, Constant Reader…and each time it stabs:
- my mother when I didn’t share my kairos moment of insight gained when I heard her ‘young mother’ laments for having too many diapered, pouty littles and no available babysitter in the cloister of a small town. I was the oldest child who heard all and absorbed`at the impressionable age of six…and I realized in that moment, her frustration, still palpable after forty years, leeched into my psyche. It was the true reason I didn’t have kids.
- a friend with memory issues who decried that I failed to schedule friendly lunches although I’d waited for her promise to do so for years…
- a friend whose expectation was that I’d abandon my longtime yoga practice to attend hers. Hers with the unkempt floors and the loud pumping music that undercut peace. She undercut peace when she proclaimed my failure far-and-wide.
- a sis(sy) who called in the early am to tell me not to come to the hospital to visit Dad because he was heavily sedated…but I came anyway and found her conniving with my bro(blame) in a tete-a-tete that excluded me. And the beat (ing) goes on.
- friends who lash out angrily in their time of need when I was unable to divine it… My ESP/empathy is strong, but sometimes the vibrations are blocked. I’m only human, not divine.
The one-sided pouting turns these people into regrettable friend/family choices, don’t you think? Though I can’t help the mother episode; she’s passed. It doesn’t pain me to have not ‘fessed to my mother; mothers never need more guilt.
To have a friend, one must be a friend. To be there is all shapes and sizes, truths and euphemisms. One must consider all sides, put ego and pride aside for the sake of relationship, so as not to be shunned. Is there anyone out there like that?