Former Friends

Letting go of someone you loved in any capacity is a painful, painful thing. It feels like you’re hollow, like your heart is missing a piece, like you can’t quite breathe properly, and like you’ll never truly be whole again. Its also terrifying, as the fact they were your safety net of some form is all consuming, and now you are afraid that you’ll fall off that tightrope with no-one to catch you.

Being completely self-reliant is something I’ve always said I wanted but haven’t made a main focus of until recently. Something always seemed to get in the way, be it work, or family, or friends, and whatever it was ended up taking precedence over my own desires. I’m still learning to put my needs, wants, thoughts, hopes and dreams first. The joys of being such a people pleaser and the scars of an ‘interesting’ childhood all rolled into one.

As a result I’m now sitting here feeling like an onion with its layers exposed, made even more ironic by the fact I was the one that exposed them in the first place. Another ‘interesting’ legacy of my childhood is that I push buttons. I’m blunt to the point of being socially incorrect, and I don’t listen to the little voice in my head that says I should really just gently ease into things, instead I am full of frank discussions that can be terribly awkward and uneasy. I pushed all the buttons and this time, in a fit of confrontation I finally saw the fact that a friendship I hold so dear isn’t really a friendship at all. It’s a relationship of convenience, held together by strings of memories and a shared past. There is no growth, no true togetherness, and no actual friendship. He doesn’t truly give a shit about me until I’m the last option to talk to, when he’s been cancelled on for the night, or he’s drunk and lonely at 3am. My tribe have been trying to tell me for years now to be honest, but I’m also quite stubborn, so I’ve ignored it. But enough is enough. And that means change.

Change is hard work. It requires blood and sweat and tears. And perseverance. People often forget to add that one in. Day in, day out, little confirmations of change that form to set boundaries, and prevent the old from corrupting the new. It’s a hard temptation to fight, preventing change. We crave stability, and safety, and love by nature. And when it’s someone that you need to let go out of your life, especially someone you’ve known a long time and shared a huge history with, who is familiar like flannel sheets, it’s even harder.

I’m ashamed of not being stronger before now. I’ve had so much stress that I’ve allowed my mind to fool itself into things being okay, when being honest with myself shows that I’ve been unhappy with the status quo for a long, long time. Our issues lie in our fundamental attitudes, and they are never going to change, regardless of how much history we share.

Coming to that conclusion was a powerful thing. It empowered me to do what was right for me instead of what was easy. And even though my head knows it’s a good thing, my heart is still sad.

But change is an unstoppable force, and sometimes the most necessary things hurt.