Friendless and Forgiveness

Recently I experienced a rash of bad luck. You could call it less of a rash and more like a spread of incurable, flesh eating diseases. I bombed a premier performance, I have lost my drivers license, passport, buss pass, school ID and social security card, I can’t register for classes because I have a $50 fine on my account (college!), I was rejected by someone who I wasn’t even dating, but the most harmful… I was let down by my closest friends.

On Tuesday (it is now Wednesday night) my friends and I were supposed to go on an apartment hunting trip, but I didn’t have the strength. I was lethargic, suffering from ennui and no one said anything to me. Nothing. While waiting for the bus, they had their backs turned to me, making small talk about classes but not a word to me. Not a single, “How are you?” “Are you okay?”. For context, I have known these people for years, some of them since around the time I moved to town. Some of my longest relationships with anyone in the city. I have confided, consoled, and connected with each of these individuals in a way that I thought was unique and meaningful. I thought.

I was so burdened under the mental strain of what I was going through coupled with the feeling of stigma and isolation from my own friends that I started to cry. On the bus. This led to even further alienation, no one sat next to me, no one looked at me and when the tears grew noticeable to the people around me the only person who had the kindness to talk to me was a woman sitting in front of me.
It wasn’t until I texted my “friend” who was sitting two feet away from me, that he came over and spoke to me. He apologized, half-heartedly, about what an asshole he was and how much he was too afraid to come speak to me. What I couldn’t understand was why. Why did it take me, telling him I was hurt, for him to come and talk to me, the friend he claimed to care for so much? Why did he feel it was appropriate for him to ignore me? What did he think I would do? Stop crying, cheer up and ask everyone if they were up for fro-yo?
These were my closest friends. People I trusted so much I wanted to move in with. People who left me crying alone on a bus, while they laughed.

What do you do? How do you move on from people who were so ingrained in your life that you have to rearrange your daily life? People who think so little of you and your feelings that you will never get an apology out of them.
In life, we are often confronted by people like this. People who take what you’ve given them without a single thank you or thought of what you might be going through. People who when it is their turn to return some of that, they come to you with empty hands.
These people will never apologize, more often than not, they won’t even feel bad for what they’ve done to you. The world is like a minefield, we are blind to navigate, never seeing those people who would blow us apart and shatter us before we can even see them coming. We can do nothing, but gather the pieces and put ourselves back together. It hurts to think that these people can replace you, they can just blow you off and move onto other friends, as if the time you have together was nothing. But the truth is, they did you a favor. They exposed themselves for who they really were, not your real friends.

Another truth: you will find new friends. It may take time, it may take years but it will happen. There will be a time when you won’t even think about them. Hold on to your anger, you have a right to be upset, it will prevent you from going back to a friendship with people who don’t care for you. Don’t worry about forgiveness just yet, when you are so happy with your new friends, that’s when they can have your forgiveness, when you don’t even think about them anymore.

When You Have no Friends (aka How to be Alone)

Today was the St. Patrick’s Day parade and I spent it alone. 
I didn’t spend it alone last year but I found that no one had called me to hang out and I felt slightly… sad. No. I didn’t. I felt very sad. 
Me, last year 

I had to go downtown today where the Paddy’s Day parade was happening and saw many people, couples, groups of friends, families and I felt very alone. I was stressed, it was crowded and I felt very exposed as though everyone around me knew I was alone and felt pity on me. It was my anxiety [I was diagnosed with anxiety in 2001, I’ll talk about that more later] telling me everyone was looking at me, but that didn’t make it feel less real. 
I find myself alone a lot, because I have very few friends. The friends I do have, don’t have much time for me and don’t return my phone calls on a regular basis and that makes me feel like they don’t consider me their friend at all. There is something very distressing about feeling you are not a friend to someone you consider your friend. I am single so I don’t have anyone to fill my spare time with and my family and I are not that close.
Me, alone at the ballet two years ago

But I am here to tell you, being alone is not being alone at all. 
Because you are always with yourself and the relationship you have with yourself is the most important relationship you’ll ever have. 
When I am feeling sad and lonely I watch a brilliant video by Andrea Dorfman called “How to be Alone”. It points out all the necessities and pleasantries about being alone and turning that time into something that nourishes you and I’d recommend it. 

If you find yourself without friends or lovers or family try these things. 

  1. Turn on your favorite upbeat music and fill your head with song. I have a playlist called “When You Are Sad” on spotify and its filled with the music that makes me move. Beyonce always helps. I also have another playlist that is called “When You are Sad but Not Enough to Cry” that is more mellow. Sometimes in silence we find its easier to get wrapped up in sad thoughts, music gives us something to focus on.
  2. Go to the movies! My favorite thing to do! Catch a matinee, get a big ol nasty bag of popcorn and a cherry coke and sit in the darkness. You’ll find that you experience the movie so much more by yourself. No one to ask you to explain who is who and you can just laugh if you want or cry if you want. 
  3. Give yourself a spa day. Shave your legs! Finally (winter is almost you know)! Get at those stray face hairs or groom them! Paint your nails, get at those bunions, put on a clay mask and just rest
  4. Get a journal and write down letters to yourself, then read them later. Ask yourself questions and then answer them. Questions like “How do you feel right now?” “How did that make you feel?” “If you could have done ‘xxx’ differently how would you have?”. You’ll be impressed by the answers you give yourself. 
  5. Pick up a craft. Crafting was really popular when I was growing up and I don’t know if people are still into the diy approach but I know many girls who are making patches, jewelry, T-shirts, and nipple pasties. Make em and sell em! Start up a small business and name yourself CEO/Captain/El Presidente. My small business is going to be called “LadyBaby” and I will be selling hats, jackets, dresses, kilts, and faux collars
  6. Start a blog! This is coming from a personal experience *cough*. I don’t enjoy being around people in an intimate environment, of like 2 or more people, but I have many interests I’d to share with people! I love art, fashion, and such but no one I know shares my interests so I decided to start a blog. I get my thoughts out their and other people can read them. I feel like I’m connecting to others but I’m still by myself and I don’t get panic attacks! 
I hope this helps and you can find yourself becoming more comfortable with being alone. Be the best company you could ever ask for and you won’t feel so lonely. If you find yourself feeling lonely, its okay, thats normal, give yourself some time and try some of the things I said! ❤

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