As it's the middle of the night, I am not at my laptop, I am typing with my thumbs on my phone. I contemplated making a cup of tea and sitting down at the kitchen table, but 4.21am felt as if it were hour too early for that. The house is small and drafty with thin wooden doors with great gaps at the top and bottom, so I didn't want to wake Charlie. Tea does sound good, however. The four o'clock hour always tempts me, with its quiet and clarity.
This is what has happened: I have hurt one of my good friends. I will say it clearly because I have been carrying it now for close to two weeks and I do not know where to put it. I have selfishly, albeit unwittingly, hurt one of my lovely friends, one of the kindest people you could ever hope to meet, and she is not speaking to me, nor responding to emails. I am devastated. And I am sorry. And I feel like the most horrible and selfish person on the planet. It's as if the the fabric of my life, all the thin threads that are woven together to create a safe, warm blanket, are unraveling. I do not say that to be dramatic. I say it because when something is a constant, a constant constant, one takes it for granted, and this event has caused the little pieces of cotton to start to fray.
This is my fault. I offer no excuse. I will not go into details but take it from me that I was thoughtless and boneheaded and excluded her from something and she is hurt. There was no reason for it. No excuse. It is purely dumb. I completely understand her reaction and why she would be upset with me. But to live through the consequences, that's hard. Perhaps that what karma is: behave in this way and you will directly suffer the consequences. You will feel the impact of it with equal force.
One of the things it has done is to help me question all my friendships, all my relationships, and to ask myself if I have been the best friend I can be. I always lean on my friends and expect a lot from them — I treasure them — but have I been a good friend in return? I am not sure that I have. I have been so wrapped up in moving here and sorting out this part of my life, that I have probably been a horrible friend.
And maybe as someone who demands so much, I should be more aware of the way I behave? And less quick to judge? This is new territory. Truthfully, I am struggling with it. I am, I am sorry to say, bewildered, and trying to find the right thing to do.
I think I am a good daughter. And I hope I am a good mother. But friend, godmother, aunt - I am less sure that I have fulfilled my roles adequately in these areas.
Life throws these things at you and you pay attention. It makes you sit up and take notice. And you act accordingly. So I am grateful for that. Not in a Pollyanna way, either. Isn't it important to lead a life that is observed. "An unexamined life is not worth living." - Socrates (as noted by Plato).
In the train yesterday, on a particularly grey and wet journey to London, I was contemplating in my head, as you do, the nature of friendship and what is expected. I would like to be the type of friend who is always there with the warm phone call at 9am and the cup of tea, but I think I am more the person that deals well with emergencies. I am a great fixer. I have to work on the more constant, less dramatic skills. The train is a funny thing. You sit so close to another person that you can feel their arm moving against yours and yet you hardly ever exchange a glance. I am self conscious to talk on the phone on the train. People who do seem like prats to me. The people who call to say "I will be on the 5.26pm" - you hear them every day. Wouldn't it be easier to text? But then I wonder if I became to blasé in LA, too big picture. Maybe I forgot that it's the small things that are important. The kindness of a thoughtful phone call. I have lived too fast.
This has made me question everything. It has caused a crisis of character. Or is it a crise du coeur? I think that's the word. But maybe that was necessary. I should be grateful for this.
But carrying around this phrase in my head - **I have hurt my friend. I made her cry.** - that is very, very tough. It doesn't go away.
I am very, very sorry.
So, Universe, so Creative Energy, so Goodness & Kindness, so Higher Beings, so God, I am asking for forgiveness. And I am asking that I learn from this. Thank you.