After twelve solid hours of hard discussion yesterday, some of it fierce, much of it painful, all of it exhausting, it seems that a *very* important friendship has been pulled back from the edge of extinction. It is in critical care right now, but its prognosis for recovery seems strong. And that, my friends, is a very good reason to celebrate.
Since my knee injury in February, and especially so since April, my constant decision for every single moment of every single day has been, "What is *the* single most important thing I could be doing right now?" Yesterday, for twelve solid hours, that decision was consistently: talking this through. Today, my first choice of the morning (I know it's almost 1pm. I had the luxury of sleeping in.) is to write this post. To declare to the world and to all my friends as witness how much I appreciate her investment in me and in us.
Yesterday's talk was not easy on either of us. I know how difficult it was on me... and it's hard to imagine, but I have to allow, that perhaps it was even more difficult on her. I treasure her for that. I treasure her for giving up an entire day to this cause with the outcome so very uncertain. I treasure her for the compromises she has made along the way.. evident in the extreme yesterday, but now I see echoes stretching back before that as well. Echoes I may have missed because their footprint was so light... but which nonetheless made an impression I can look back on and see from this current vantage. I treasure her for asking for her needs and desires and for letting me say "yes" or "I'll try" to them.
I appologize for needing something she finds almost impossible to give, and I tell her right now, in this public forum, yesterday you gave it and let no one convince you different. I feel heard. I feel respected. I feel important. I am also uncertain and wary and frightened that this feeling won't hold--that some new hardship will come along and damage it. But right now I feel I have everything I need to set the past aside and move forward with confidence and trust. I truly hope she can say the same, and if there is something more I need to give, I will do my utmost to give it.
And it matters. What you were able to give yesterday matters more than I can put into words right now and healed some very deep very old wounds you were never responsible for. I am sorry for the cost. Very sorry for the cost. I hope that knowing you made a difference (make a difference) helps repay it.
Even if the friendship fades, ... or (I think) even if it falls apart dramatically, yesterday matters. Today matters. All your efforts before yesterday matter. And now they have someplace within me to connect and to be treasured. I'm sorry you had to build the shadow-box to hold them all. I treasure you for doing so.
As I wander through my house today, tiding things as I can (I've taken a couple of tea-breaks throughout this post, trying to fit my thoughts and feelings to words) I have re-encountered several little flowers in various stages of drying. Every day we have spent time together in the past couple of weeks she has brought me a little wildflower, and I have set them carefully aside, unsure what to do with them or even what they meant. Today I know that they meant she never gave up. Today I know they meant she still had hope. Today I know they meant I was valued and treasured all along, more than I could feel.
The little flowers mean more to me today than they did when they were given. .. And they meant more to me when they were given than I could have grasped or put into words. Thank you.
In the midst of all this recent turmoil, I missed my friend's birthday. It hurt both of us very deeply. She wanted me there. I wanted to be there. Miscommunication Gremlins and some serious physical pain won out that weekend, and everyone suffered. She didn't have the birthday she wanted, nor the one I would have planned. But she did have other friends with her, so I am very glad she did not lose out completely.
If you haven't already, please stop by her blog
and tell her happy birthday. If you already have, please stop by and give her a hug. She's been through as rough a time as I have lately, and she still managed to be there for me. I'll be having another try at celebrating her birthday and our friendship this weekend (and for the next couple weeks, really... it's a huge cause for celebration, after all!). Sunday evening if you are one of the fortunate few who could make it in person (contact me for details.) If you're afar or unable to attend, I'll gather up notes and cards and giftieee stuff for her if you mail them to me. (e-mail at: peacockschallenge at hotmail dot com.) Address them to (or subject line) "Best Friend" .. help me make up for her shattered birthday? and for our nearly-shattered (shattered and repaired, really) friendship? Thank you.
Bethieee, I love you, I'm glad that you're here. I'm very lucky to have you as a best friend. Thank you.
Oh S! I'm missing a doctor's appointment. Gotta go!!