I got a text from a friend today. I still haven’t written back. I was so blown away. I had been thinking about her a day or so ago. We have become good friends because she was recently separated (in the last 12 months), and I can always smell someone who’s about to jump or fall out of a marriage. It’s a gift. And I reached out because I need more single friends, selfishly. I can see divorces coming by the way people phrase things, the way they don’t say it. But it bleeds through. I can smell the odor of flowers and happiness beyond the abyss they have to cross, before they can regain their sense of smell, before they can actually smell again. Before there are flowers.
I mean, since I was a small child, I could smell pain and sadness. I was always trying to know what was wrong before it happened. If I could get to the problem before it blew up, then my home could be safer and happier and things would be better. And since the adults in my home were in their own troubled marriage, and I was the oldest girl of three, two younger boys, obviously I would have taken on that responsibility. (Footnote for sarcasm)
I go back to my friend. We met and chatted. And I can feel the sameness and the differences between our issues. She has shared the tears in the fabric, why she is where she is. She did what I did. And she did things differently. And I want to sit and talk and hear her story, her why, tell mine, love that we have the opportunity to meet here, for whatever it is or isn’t.
And after months of becoming better friends, and truly not because we found we were more alike, but because well, I enjoyed her… She woke up this morning, knowing something had changed in her. Her landscape changed overnight. She woke a new version of her person, and she sent me a note to share her epiphany with me. I have seen her grow and change and become stronger and more confident. And I love that every once in awhile we talk so openly about our flaws and are so honest that life feels malleable in the best way. And today, she had a moment, one of many, and she shared it with me!
And everything I believe in, everything I am passionate about, everything I live for, kinda wells up and tears fall and I see a scene in my head, with me running through a field of tall flowers and maybe they’re weeds, cause they have the fuzzy things on top. And my hair is shining in the sun, and I feel light and flighty and alive and giddy and smiling. And truly, I am alone in the vision. And I am just running wild and free, not a care in the world. That’s what I felt when I read her text. The weeds were spreading. Not from me. But around me. She had kicked the weeds, spread them around, set them free!
Here’s the thing. We are all connected, for good or bad. We all feel each other’s joy and pain. Since I was a small child, I have had this. I have worked on it so as to know my own feelings. But this, this felt like some really healthy empathic love that I felt towards life, towards change, towards grief, towards growth, towards friendship, towards sharing! This wasn’t anything codependent. Guess what, I have changed too.
Every second you hate your life, every second you fight something painful, every instant you want to give up… Please don’t. Please don’t ever give up. Push through. Experience every ugly thing inside you. Dig into everything uncomfortable. And that’s what this person taught me. We interacted with divorce differently, and me meeting her was about exploding more into myself than ever before. And she taught me that all the while she was growing too.
So hold a hand, listen, make a friend, share something similar and different. The lesson, the shared experience we all have isn’t knowing what we will learn or when. It’s just knowing that we are living our own truth and learning from those we are attracted to for different reasons. Please… live out loud. Please… don’t be afraid of pain. Please… know in being you and living your truth you gather strength, growth and by running through that field, you spread the weeds… And the web grows around you too.
With love today,