I once had a friend I will call Lou, a straight-forward, serious, kind of gal. I was the goof-around, never-take-anything-seriously, woman. We formed a bond over our differences.
Over lunches and extra activities, we grew to know one another. Only sometimes, you don’t know who people are until you see who they are.
As I watched her interact with others, I saw a different friend, one who was curt, blunt, with a somewhat short fuse. I tried to talk to her about how she treated others, but she wouldn’t listen.
Still, I remained her friend. After all, she’d never been that way with me.
At home, something began to happen. I noticed a change in me, a little frustration, a tiny seed of anger beneath my skin. I wondered if it had something to do with Lou.
One week, I endured a series of unfortunate events, after which I called my friend.
“I’m so frustrated,” I said.
This is what she told me, “It is your fault. You have sin, or your car wouldn’t have died, and your furnace would be working.”
I became angry, and slammed down the phone.
She was my friend, or so I thought. Yet her words were unforgiving, unrealistic, harsh, and cold.
I knew what I needed to do.
I ended the friendship. It was over. Complete.
Sometimes a friend becomes the anchor that ties you to shore. Sometimes, you just need to cut loose.
Letting go was the best thing I ever did. Lou had been holding me back, stopping me from being all I could be. She had filled my life with unkind, negative words. When I let go of her, I became a better me.
Years later, I had a similar situation. This time, it was with a Facebook friend.
She wrote a post. I didn’t agree. I made a comment, and tried to be kind. She said nothing, but her friends did.
They harassed and cursed. They were rude. Apparently, even adults can bully one another.
My friend didn’t stand up for me, or even respond. Which didn’t make her much of a friend.
Once again, I had to let go.
Friends can be hard to let go of. People are like old worn shoes we grow accustomed to. But like the old worn shoe that is bad for our knees and feet, people can be bad, too.
Sometimes we need to shake the dirt off, sweep the dust beneath our feet, and, cleanse our lives from what doesn’t make it better.
Some friends aren’t meant to be friends, and then there are those that always remain.
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