Has anyone out there ever wished for a free do-over? I mean who hasn’t? There are the little do-overs and there are the big ones. I have a wish for a big one.
I had this very close, beloved friend. As with all of my good friends, at this point in my life, we don’t live in the same city. So time spent with any of them is precious and not near enough. In the case of this friend we were fortunate to be able to spend some time together over Thanksgiving. During our time together a huge and heated difference of opinion, regarding something very important to both of our hearts, came about. Sadly the difference of opinion resulted in our time together being cut short. We didn’t part on good terms. But we began a communication by email in an effort to reach some sort of understanding.
So now for the do-over part. Always in the past we’ve been able to work things out over time and through phone calls. However in this situation I let my fear and hurt get the better of me and instead of calling…instead of expressing my concern for my friend…when said friend stopped responding to my emails, and other attempts at correspondence, I let more and more time pass in between each of my attempts at communication. And still, knowing this friend and knowing how she is and how hard it can be for her to reach out, I let my fear of further conflict, my hurt and anger over the existing conflict and maybe some stubborness or a feeling that maybe it was her turn this time to reach across the gap, get the better of me and I pulled further and further back.
Then one day, without letting her know that I was struggling with her silence, without letting her know how scared and hurt and convinced that she was finished with our friendship I was, instead of reaching out and attempting to communicate these things with her I just unfriended her on facebook. When she responded, shocked that I would do such a thing, I sent an email explaining myself, but, once again, let my fear get the better of me and did not take that risk of calling her.
So things ended very badly and she has asked me not to be in communication with her ever again. Now I do not mean to imply that she bears no responsibility for how things went. Because I think the responsibility is shared between the two of us. But, had I, knowing her as I’d come to know her, taken that risk to reach out and actually talk with her instead of how I did things, maybe we, at the very least, could have come to a point of agreeing to disagree and parted ways in a better way than we did. Of course the best case scenario would have been that we would have found our way to common ground and still been friends to this day.
But that’s not how it went and I remain very, very sad…missing her very, very much. I’m having trouble letting go and moving on…..
Wish I could have a “do-over”…..
My dear friend of MANY years wrote this back in 2012. Of course the message is a timeless one and the writing is…well see for yourself!
“Why aren’t you out there helping people instead of animals?”
I see this sentiment expressed sometimes, usually in some online comment section, where the person writing it revels in snarkiness, almost always under the cloak of anonymity.
While I usually dismiss these sourpusses as your basic animal and people haters, their question always makes me think about how easy it is to view these two groups – animals and people — as being separate when it comes to animal rescue. Of course, we know that the animals we find homes for are going to live with people. However, because our objective is saving animals, it’s mainly the animals on which we focus.
A lot of that focus is simple practicality. This is how rescuing a dog often goes: “I have to fatten up this starved dog I got out of the pound. Then I’ve got to get her treated…
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