I suspect we’ve all lost friends. This disease takes a toll on us and leaves us unable to interact with others like we used to. I’m not able to give in the way that I used to. I used to enjoy being the one others could lean on. I used to love being a confidant – hearing and not repeating. It was as if I belonged in others’ lives, as if I held a special place in others’ hearts. I was a confidant. Now I don’t remember. In some ways, that might be good, but in other ways it’s just plain frightening for those who might want to tell me secrets.

It’s odd; I suddenly remember people just like I suddenly remember objects or events. It’s like I come to consciousness each day, but by the next day I have forgotten everything I remembered. At this point being my friend is really a lot of work. I don’t judge my friends by who sticks around and does that work. That simply wouldn’t be fair. However, I do wonder about those people who simply disappear. What happens to them? Where do they go? Why did they leave?

I’ve built new relationships. Some people have stuck around. Some people have entered my life. I spend my days with people I’ve come to love. I laugh with friends I never knew I had. I laugh with friends I’ve always loved. I am sustained by these relationships. I love the ones who have come into my life and the ones who have remained.

Today, though, I suddenly remembered a good friend of mine. At the same time that I remembered her, though, I realized that she has not been around. My head says that the good thing would be not to blame her, to realize that I am difficult to be around these days. However, my heart blames her. I feel guilty about that, but I can’t write this if I am not truthful. Will you read on knowing that I blame her? I hope so.

I like to think that I would’ve been there for her had the situation been reversed. I like to think I would’ve visited. I like to think I would’ve taken her out to eat. I like to think we would’ve gone to the park or to the movies. I like to think we would’ve laughed together. I like to think that we were close enough that we could make a new relationship. I’m not sure, though; it might’ve been too difficult. I might’ve simply grieved and stopped visiting.

7 thoughts on “Friends
  1. I would blame, have done so in the past. It was too painful for me not to. I like knowing how you are, what you’re feeling. Thanks for writing this.

  2. Thanks, Mara. I miss you.

  3. Your post makes me wonder if I’ve always been the friend I should be to those in my life who aren’t doing as well, and also why friends left me when I wasn’t doing so well. Perhaps it’s hard for them to know what to say.

  4. Perhaps, Spooky. I think that what we should all do is ask our friends what they need from us. If they will tell us, then maybe we can give it to them.

  5. I would blame, but I would also, for my own sake, say (and forgive myself) that we all do what we can. Bless our little hearts, every one!

  6. I understand. I have been the leaver and the left. Right now, I’m standing by some loved ones who are suffering (and aging) and I’m learning that it’s less about what we say and more about how damned awkward and tiring and scary it feels. I love you, Michelle. You are a brave, brilliant star.

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