It wasn't about you

Monday, November 7, 2016

Dear Friend,

We have not spoken in ages. I understand you were hurt by the way I acted after Max died. I retreated into myself. I did not always answer phone calls, emails or texts. When I did leave the safety of my home, I was very careful about where I went and with whom. I understand that you took this personally. I recognize that you tried to say the right things to me and found that I didn't respond, or even worse, sometimes those things you said upset me - even though you meant well. You didn't like the way I handled my grief - I wasn't very much fun to be around. Plus, you were going through some stuff too, and I wasn't really there for you in those early years after my baby died. I still sometimes don't seem to be "all there" - that's because I'm not.

I get it, dear friend. I understand why our friendship drifted away.You are not the only one who decided it would be easier to walk than to stick by my side. Still, I have been thinking a lot about it these past 5+ years and I just have to tell you (because it seems like you still don't really know this): it wasn't about you. The circle of people that made me feel safe was very small - I am sorry you weren't one of them. I had nothing in me at all to try and make you feel comfortable around me, because I was so uncomfortable myself. I just needed to be with people who naturally felt at ease being with someone in pain like I was. However that made you feel, it wasn't really about you. I am sorry that I was a drag to be around - it took everything I had in me to be around other people at all. I was fighting for my life. I promise, it wasn't about you. I know you tried to say the right thing, but for whatever reason, at that time, "the right thing" you said didn't resonate with me. It wasn't about you. Your ego was hurt, and I get that - but it wasn't about you.

So many of my friendships have been renewed since the really early days, most people realizing that my "rejection" of them wasn't really "about them". So many people kept their expectations of me fairly low, and didn't let their egos get in the way of supporting me. I am lucky because I know it isn't easy to stick by someone who is sullen, angry, and struggling. I am blessed to know real friendship, devotion and love. If I hurt your feelings after my baby died - I am sorry. I was, and continue to be, half the person I once was. All I can say is that I am working on it but it isn't so easy and also that it wasn't and still isn't about you. 

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