Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Making Amends

To be brief, my "adult" life has been a ridiculous rollercoaster ride, and I have been the conductor. A few years ago, it would've been easy for me to blame any number of people for my behavior, words, actions and general relationship with the world around me. I was careless, selfish, aloof and a liar.

In many ways, I relate to my former self as an addict without a drug. I was out of control in some really fundamental ways, and the thing that tugs at me the most now that I've straightened shit, and myself, out has been the genuinely kind and generous people I screwed over along the way. The first, naturally, being my parents. My mother tells me repeatedly, "I always thought that the closer you got to 30, the better friends we'd become." How true it is...I feel a kinship with my mother now that I have never felt in my life. Also, my best friends from childhood...people I have known for 24 out of my 29 years. And then there were people along the way who pretty much gave of themselves selflessly. I, rather than being of sound mind, clung to them as though they were lifeboats in a quaking sea, and hurt them in ways that I almost cannot bear in retrospect.

I suppose that in many ways this all sounds melodramatic. I had this really weird and mildly intense dream about an old friend of mine, to whom I dedicated a lot of time and energy and in return she gave me 4x as much, and I saw her lost and confused. I know for a fact that she is not. It would be virtually impossible for her to not have her feet firmly to the ground. But I imagine I was reflecting on that particular part of my life in much the way Joan Didion does in this quote:
We are well advised to keep on nodding terms with the people we used to be, whether we find them attractive company or not. Otherwise they turn up unannounced and surprise us, come hammering on the mind's door at 4am of a bad night and demand to know who deserted them, who betrayed them, who is going to make amends. We forget all too soon the things we thought we could never forget.
So I found this friend on Facebook and I sent her a message. I don't know whether it will resonate or change anything at all, but I have honored her and, in a way, forgiven myself for what I did in regards to my friendship with her. And that's all I can do...that's all any of us can do, right?

This concludes this hour of Deep Thoughts by the Gay Housewife, volume 3,492.

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