Monday, November 3, 2008

Sleeping with Bread

"The examen, based on the spiritual exercises of St. Ignatius, helps a person hold onto what spiritually nourishes him by looking at what is giving him consolation in his life or causing him desolation. It allows someone to express his gratitude to God for the good stuff and turn to him for solace for the bad stuff. It is quite simple. You simply ask yourself, in the last day/week/month what gave me consolation and what caused me desolation."

This was a hard week for me. I have been remembering a lot a friend who passed away 3 years ago this week. She was incredibly influential in forming some of the core beliefs I hold today, but shortly before she died, we had an incredibly silly argument, and stopped talking. She felt like I wasn't supporting her in a major decision she had made, I felt like she wasn't supporting me in a major decision I had made, and I am pretty sure we were just misunderstanding each other, but we let it get out of hand. We didn't communicate for about 4 months, and then her ex-husband called to tell me that she had been found dead in her apartment.

I think there is still a broken place inside me that may not ever be able to heal, because she died before I was smart enough to tell her that it really didn't matter - I loved her, and that was the important thing. She has been increasingly on my mind because of two people who have recently come into my life that, for various reasons, remind me of her. It was through her that I came to believe that friendship is more than just a word - true friendship requires action. I believe that a true friend does more than just say they care - they show the importance of the relationship by how they treat the person they call their friend. It's why I don't have a lot of people I consider to be true friends, because I expect more out of that relationship than most people are willing to give. I don't mind - the friendships I have are that much stronger for the work we put into them.

But Keri showed me how to be a friend, and in the end I wasn't one for her. I know she would want me to forgive myself for it, but I'm not sure I can. I hope somewhere she knows how sorry I am, and how much I love her.


bermudaonion said...

I'm sorry that you're having to struggle with this. I hope you can find some peace from it soon.

Bawdy Wench said...

There is a reason for everything and forgiveness of self comes before all else.


Bawdywench said...

Wrong URL, sorry. :)

Mary-LUE said...

Oh Elizabeth, you're making me want to cry! It is such a sad story. I've had my own experiences with regret and death and I've had to make peace with some things that can never be.

I'm so glad, though, that you had someone who meant that much to you, who impacted your life in such a way. I hope that honoring the grief you are still feeling will help you heal what right now does not feel like can heal.

Elizabeth said...

Thanks, everyone, for the encouragement. I WAS lucky to have her in my life, and the pain I'm feeling is a blessing, because it helps me remember her. Forgiving myself is always the hardest thing, but I'm working on it.

Lamont said...

Last week I lost a friend to a sudden heart attack - although we'd just spoken a few days before he passed, I find myself wondering if the conversation was all it was supposed to be. It makes me think more how I leave each person when I'm going about my day. Remembering to say you care... thinking of you in your loss as well.