Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Love and Loss

February is a month full of love. Chocolates, flowers, jewelry ads all over the TV, and a whole lot of red flooding the aisles of every grocery store and superstore.

It's a really hard month for many singles, widows, etc. The tears flow for many as they walk those aisles and keep their heads down, trying to disappear amongst the heartache.

It's also a really hard time for those struggling with the loss of a relationship that's no longer what it used to be.

With love often comes loss. Pain. Hardship. Trials.

February is hard on many of us. It can be so very great, but also so very hard. Sometimes that's in the expectations we have of what our spouse should/shouldn't do for us. Sometimes that's in the deep fear that we'll spend the rest of our lives alone. Sometimes that's in the death of a loved one. Sometimes it's in the reflection on what isn't a part of our lives that we wish still was.

For me personally, this month especially, I'm struggling to see past the dark clouds of a failed friendship.

One of those long-lasting, childhood friendships that suddenly ended 6 months ago in a surprising way for me with a lot of confusion and sadness. Hearing about things I'd done that hurt her deeply and I truly had no idea. My heart is deeply grieved and wounded. I'm not at all sure how to process it, and honestly I think about it all. the. time.

How can I be a better friend? Can this yet be redeemed and the friendship be restored?

There are days it all honestly hurts so badly I can barely breathe.

I found a picture of her the other day. I started shaking as I picked it up. I choked back the flood of tears. The memories flooded my mind and overwhelmed me.

I'm not sure how to feel or what to say. It all aches beyond comprehension, and while she did not die, it somewhat feels like a death. She's gone in so many ways to me. We can't just pick up where we left off in our conversations anymore. We don't talk on the phone, we don't email, we don't text, and we don't see each other.

And oh wow, I really, really, really miss her.

Almost daily.

She was a lifeline for me in so many ways. She was like a sister to me and a part of my family for so long. I cannot believe this is it for us. It just feels like it can't be.

Things change. We grow and mature, we change and life happens. But this? This is ridiculously hard and painful. I am struggling with it so much.

For the ways that I messed up and didn't handle things the way I should have, I repented and she graciously forgave. But that's it, we're just not what we were. We've attempted to talk about it but it's just not happening. I will forever regret what happened.

There is no perfect friendship. No perfect marriage. No perfect anything.

But there are great marriages, incredible friendships, and truly lasting relationships. We have to work hard on both sides, learn to forgive, and seek communication and openness. Relationships are tough and we all have our moments, but the truly amazing friendships that we find along the road of life are the ones that are with us forever... through thick and thin, no matter what.

I'm blessed beyond measure with extraordinary friends. At least a few that I have no doubt will be lifelong friends, no matter where life takes us or how far apart we are physically. They are just those kind of people.

My people. 

I'm sure you have people you also know will undoubtedly be there for you. But if you've ever suffered a loss, you know that life surprises you and it can be crazy hard. We just have to keep doing our best to build and sustain what we have.

February can be so fantastic and fulfilling, wounding and challenging. Love and loss. Joy and sadness.

I pray you are able to embrace whatever comes your way this month and that you love well those who are in your life, and pray for those who no longer are.

[And despite that my February month blog post is weeks behind schedule, I hope you still read this and can find something to get from it even though February is practically over!]

image from flickr

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