I’ve been thinking about forgiveness a lot lately, mostly because I feel that I should offer it to someone close to me. But that old saying about not being able to forgive if we can’t forget rings true. And I can’t forget.
A close friend and I have been on a break for a few months. I’m not going to divulge the details of our hiatus here, partially because I’m fairly sure it would get back to her (if she’s not reading this herself), and also because it’s not important. She and I agreed that if we were going to reconvene as friends, we would do so with a fresh start – putting the past behind us and moving forward with new attitudes towards each other and the lives we lead.
I miss her terribly. I have dreams about calling her and telling her that I’m ready to try again, and I regularly find things that I know would make her laugh but can’t share with her because of this separation. The ball is in my court, and I know that I could mend things at any time. But I can’t forget.
I can’t stop being angry at her for things she’s done or said, or things her friends have done or said to me that she has condoned (or at least not explicitly condemned). I also feel that I’ve been pushed out of her life, and look at this hiatus as a way of taking that decision under my control – a sort of “you can’t fire me because I’m quitting” approach.
I don’t want to quit. But I also don’t want to compete. With the distance, with the friends she’s known since high school who seemingly dislike me for no reason, with the vast differences in our personalities and lifestyles and future plans. I want to live my life without judgment, free of negativity and fleeting comments made in jest that make me feel as though I’m eight years old again and being admonished by my second grade teacher for being a very bad girl.
I may just need more time, and I’ll continue to take it until I decide otherwise. But I don’t know how I’ll make that decision. And maybe I won’t be able to. Maybe I’ll be stuck in friendship purgatory forever.