Dated: May 8th, 2018
(I know it’s been a while since I’ve written, and I’m still not quite sure what to say in this letter, but here it goes.)
I know we used to talk, I remember those stupid conversations over Facebook chat when I told you that I’d always be here for you. I remember the times we’d banter like best friends in the library when we were meant to be working on assignments. I know we said we’d stay in touch- or at least that was a promise I made to you- and yet, here we are. I’m no longer a girl you’re friends with, but merely a girl you used to know.
I meant to visit, truly I did. I’m not sure if it was the fear of holding onto someone who made it harder than it had to be to move on, both figuratively and physically, or the fact that I was too cowardly and selfish to let myself remember that I missed you like crazy when we didn’t see each other for a long while. Whatever the reason I had at the time for not even making an effort to try and stay in your life, there’s no excuse that can excuse my terrible behaviour as someone you considered a friend. I am truly sorry.
As for the ones who kept on my case, reminding me to visit, seeing as how I now lived so close. I don’t know why I didn’t listen… maybe I thought it’d be easier to not say another goodbye as I headed back home for good. Maybe I was too terrified at seeing you again, and having nothing worthwhile to tell you about my life. Maybe I was afraid we wouldn’t have that same connection to each other that we used to. Maybe it was laziness on my part, that kept me away… because having another person to keep up with wasn’t something I thought I’d have time for. But, even when I didn’t call or say anything, I was still thinking about you. I know I should have stopped by at least once or twice, but I’m too good at keeping people at a distance.
See, in my mind, I want to be your friend. I want to keep in contact, remain in your life, get to know your kids when, and if, you ever have any. I want to celebrate your accomplishments and milestones with you when you get that job you’ve been praying for. Or when you finish school. Or even when you decide to quit that job and move to a new town. I want to be there to see you do it all, but then, I’m afraid of you getting sick of me. I’m scared of you thinking that the only reason I want to be in your life now, is because of something you’ve done and not simply because of who you are. I’m scared of you disconnecting before I do, because it’s inevitable unless we both try really hard to stay together. I want to fight for you, but I don’t want to be the only one fighting. And I know that’s not fair of me to say now, because, for the longest time, you were in that position. You were the one wanting to remain in my life, while I didn’t even try to remain in yours.
The problem with having so many people in your life is being there for all of them. So, instead of showing that I do care about all of you, I slowly let you go. I move on before you get the chance to see that I’m not the type of friend- or person- you need anymore. And even if I miss you now, maybe someday being away from you won’t hurt so much. I’m building up an immunity to being lonely because it’s better to be ready for this kind of thing. You can be so close to someone one day, and the next day, they could be gone. I’ve seen this happen more than I’d care to admit, but life doesn’t always go the way you’ve planned.
And at the same time, THAT’S reason enough to want to hold on to the friends I’ve lost through the years, and the people I’ve let go of… because you never know when they will be gone for good. And it’s better to have people in your life while they’re here, than to miss another chance at knowing them by waiting too long. So I’m sorry that I let go of you when I so desperately want you to know that I still care about you… that I never stopped caring about you. I’m sorry for being such a crappy person by not keeping you around even though I wanted to. I’m sorry that I’ll probably still continue to do so because it’s really hard to admit that I want you back in my life. For all I know, you’ve moved on from me in the same way that I pretended to move on from you.
Mostly, I’m sorry to myself… for not being the type of person who fights to keep someone that I love and care for around when they’ve seemingly given up on me. I wish I was able to be bold when that old friend said a last goodbye that I wasn’t ready for, and didn’t want to hear. I wish I could have prevented the loss of connection from happening when they all seemed to leave at the same time. I wish I hadn’t walked away without telling said friends that I cared. But now, the only evidence of their exsistance in my life is words scrawled across 4 pages of an end of school book that I try and fail to keep away from my memories. The ending to us, written out for me to glance back on any time I feel like I miss you. The worst part of it all is that those words break my heart a bit more everytime I see them, but I can’t help but just keep looking back at them, clinging to the memory of knowing you. Because, even if those words are heartbreaking, they were the last words I witnessed from you.
I’m sorry I’ve been so distant when I’ve run into you around town- that I never found the courage to say a simple hello, even though I really wanted to. You were once someone I could say anything to, and now it’s so very difficult to even say hello. It’s not that I don’t like you anymore, it’s not that I’ve forgotten about all you’ve done for me. It’s that I never know quite know what to say when there’s so much I want to say. Therefore, in filtering my innermost thoughts about seeing you again, I filter every word, keeping my mouth shut and eyes fixed to the ground. Distancing myself from you doesn’t feel natural, but words take courage, and I’m sorry for the lack thereof.
~End of May 8th letter
As I look back on all that is written here, I’m made aware of that feeling of fear that plagues the mouths of many. It truly is a struggle to stand up and speak, but maybe- just maybe- finally publishing this letter will allow me to start to conquer that fear. I’m still no good at face to face encounters, or conversations over the phone, but in the submission of this letter to the many that have come before, I am starting to take back control of my own insecurities. Hopefully soon, I can makes leaps towards the goal of being more outspoken.
Until then, or at some other time,