This week’s focus was on life’s basic needs – air, water and relationships. Ahhhh, relationships. If there’s one area of my life that’s challenged me, it’s relationships. Drama pretty much sums it up. More recently, as I’ve taken inventory of my life and determined how I want to live, I’ve realized that like food and cooking, relationships can and should be simple and easy.
Thinking about unresolved relationships, one stands out pretty obviously. It has tortured me for the past four years. In 2005, my best friend of 16 years (I’ll call her Brenda) moved to NYC. I had been living here for less than a year and was working overtime to make new friends and adjust to an unfamiliar city. It was an unsettling time in my life and I was struggling to define myself as an adult.
I knew that my friend’s arrival here was exactly what I needed to feel at home. After high school she and I had lived in different cities, but we visited each other often and kept in touch constantly by phone and email. Some of my best memories in my life I made with her. I told her everything. We shared clothes and exchanged advice. She was engaged and I was to be in her wedding. I didn’t know how lucky I was to have a friend like her. I do now. I’ve never known another friendship like ours.
During the relationship lecture, I was reminded of a line from A Course in Miracles, which I follow closely, that says “You’re never arguing about what you think you’re arguing about.” How true that is.
One month before her wedding, Brenda and I had an argument that lasted several days or longer. All the frustration, anger and disharmony I felt inside about whatever was going on in my life came pouring out of me and onto Brenda. Many hurtful words were exchanged. I’ll never forget the day – a week later at a Park Avenue Starbuck’s when I asked for forgiveness and she asked me not to stand up in her wedding. That was the day the two of us found it in our hearts to end our 16-year friendship in a New York minute. We never spoke again. I’ll never understand how.