Brian Chalker wrote the poem “A Reason, A Season or A Lifetime” and it often circulates periodically in emails and on Facebook for you to forward to those lifetime friends you have in your life. You know, the one who is that person. That one who you can go to no matter what, through thick and thin, good or bad, against all odds. The Thelma to your Louise. And I think if you have a friend like that, you are blessed. Sometimes, you may even have more than one and if that’s the case, consider yourself lucky.
I’ve definitely had my reason and season friends. And I look back fondly on some of them. Some of them, not so much.
As I grow older, I much prefer to focus my attention on those lifetime friends, the ones who have been there for me during times of change and during times of turmoil and even those, believe it or not, who have been there for you during times of happiness. It’s funny, that there really are people who can’t be happy for you when good things happen. The reason friends who really only want to be friends with you when things don’t go your way, or when your life sucks. I wonder if they feel better about themselves in that type of situation. They have endless amounts of advice to help you through crisis and pain, but when life takes a turn for the better, they’re off.
I had one of those. She couldn’t seem to accept when things went my way. She also didn’t tell me everything that was going on in her life, but instead would tell me after the fact, like when she met a guy she was starting to get serious with. That’s a big deal! And she didn’t tell me about him until months later. When I got engaged, sure she was happy for me. Even said yes to be one of my bridesmaids, which is an important responsibility. But then things changed. I don’t know if it had to do with her, her boyfriend, or the fact that she was just the type of person who couldn’t be happy for somebody else, but after a few upsetting comments and events, I essentially asked her not to be a bridesmaid anymore.
Trust me, it wasn’t easy. In fact, I went back and forth so many times on the decision, but in the end, I’m glad it happened, even if it did go down with yelling and crying on a packed commuter train during rush hour!
We had a brief reconciliation after I got married, and funny enough, she was in the midst of planning her own wedding. So what happened? She got mad at me for not attending her wedding, even though I told her I would be on vacation! And she returned to her old self by not telling me she was pregnant. Again, a pretty big deal and something one usually does share with their friends! I found out when I ran into her and saw her pregnant belly.
It was at that moment, although I was genuinely very happy for her, that I decided that I was done for good. So I walked away from the friendship and have never looked back. She has tried to connect with me through Facebook, but I can’t do it. I can’t be friends with somebody who isn’t reciprocal. Friendship is a two way street.
So while I won’t go over the cliff for just anyone, I cherish all my friends. I respect that everyone has stuff going on, myself included, and know that even if we can meet up for a few hours, every few months, I look forward to those moments. Friends help shape your life and the fill your heart. And let’s face it, make you laugh like nobody can! So thanks go out to all the Thelma’s of my life! Anytime you want to take on the world, you can count on me!