We had been friends for over 30 years. We met in the 2nd grade. We grew up together and shared some of life’s biggest milestones. I had come to think of her more like a sister, rather than just a friend. As adults her husband and children became an extension of my own family. We shared our wins and losses. I would seek her out for advice, someone to vent to, someone to cry with, someone to laugh and have an amazing time with. I trusted her with every aspect of my life and thought she would always be there for me no matter what. And then she wasn’t.
We never saw eye to eye on politics. She and her husband would sometimes like to get into debates with me. I tried to be respectful of their views, I listened to them, but I just didn’t always agree. I felt they were entitled to their opinions, and because of the strong friendship even when I was uncomfortable on the receiving end of the barbs, I just let it go. I never really felt it was a big issue, until it became one.
At a party talk turned toward politics. She began poking fun and teasing but was taking it a bit too far. I felt she sensed I was getting uncomfortable and annoyed and thought that would be the end of it. But then she asked me a question, “Do you sometimes feel attacked by my husband and I on politics?” I replied honestly, “Yes.” It never occurred to me that I could be anything but honest with her. It never occurred to me that she would take offense at my response. Her reaction however was to tell me, “If you feel that way I want nothing more to do with you.” I was stunned; I couldn’t believe she took that stance. That was the end of our friendship.
We never really spoke or saw each other again after that. I tried reaching out at one point to explain how upset I was. She never once tried to contact me to discuss it and address it. That just made me feel even worse. I always felt a true friend would have acknowledged my feelings and reacted by perhaps trying not to continue to interact with me in a way that made me feel like that. For me a line was crossed that day, I was devastated to discover that someone I felt so close to could discard the friendship so easily.
You begin to question your judgment in a situation like this. I was so blindsided by the whole thing, how could I have trusted someone so implicitly that would treat me so coldly and turn her back on me simply because she didn’t like hearing the truth. I can honestly say I have never in my life felt so betrayed.
Let’s Get Emotional
My goal with the challenge this year is to use it as an exercise to write something focused on a particular emotion. I hope to convey that mood or feeling through word choice in the story. I welcome your feedback on what worked or didn’t for you in each piece.
Once upon a time...
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