Oh dear, it's been a while...You're going to realize one of these days, that while I haven't been around for a while, I absolutely have not forgotten about you. I swear, I write to you in my head all the time. I know that doesn't help you much, but I haven't forgotten, I just haven't written it all down. It's been two weeks since I filled you guys in. Let's play catch up. :)
This week started the third week of the semester. Things are starting to smooth out a bit more now that we're fully in the swing of things. Class was...class. Lectures, seminars, readings, and warnings about papers. You know, the usual. Nothing really interesting on that part. That was most of the past two weeks. Most, but not all.
I also spent this past weekend in Dublin. It was...wonderful. I got to catch up with friends that I hadn't seen since before Christmas. Almost everybody came out for at least a little while, something I was very happy about. It did, however, make somethings very obvious to me. Things change. The group dynamic was different from what I remember. Or maybe I chose to forget somethings and made it this idyllic harmony in my mind. I'm not sure which, but that doesn't mean that the way it is now is bad, just different. Which actually is probably the most unsettling thing about being back with friends. Oh don't look at me like that. Having that weekend was great, and I'd do it over in a heartbeat, but in some ways it kinda felt like rubbing salt in an open wound. I know I had to go home at the end of my time in Dublin, just as I'll go home at the end of this term. The closer I got to leaving, the quieter I got. For the three who spent my last day in Ireland with me, I wasn't up set, nothing was wrong, I was simply enjoying being in your presence, soaking up every second to take back with me.
But there was a moment in the beginning when I felt like I had been slapped in the face with the fact that while I call them friends, and hope they will always be my friends and I theirs, I'm not around. There's nothing worse than a friend who isn't there when something happens; who doesn't know what's going on in people's lives. Who acts like nothing matters, or like they don't care. I sat there and talked and smiled and realized what a horrible friend I've been to so many people.
I always cherished the friendships that could endure long breaks and still pick up like there was never any time apart. I always thought they were the best because they could survive anything, but I'm beginning to see it for the lie it is. Those friendships aren't okay, they're cruel. They're hard to maintain, but not because they're not worth it, rather a person simply has to put more effort into it. They're easier to fall apart, and you might not even realize it happened. When it comes to life, though, you only fill them in after things have happened. They're never there to hold your hand while it's happening. Or rather, if they're holding your hand through it, which let's be honest isn't all that often, they don't know they're holding your hand. So when that moment comes to lean on them, you fall over, because they didn't know they had to be there to hold you up or keep you together.
Only the biggest news is shared, and usually only after the fact. You can't lean on each other because you're not there for each other. Listen to me talking like I have it all figured out. I don't. I value my friends and I care deeply about them all. But for many of them, I'm not around for things. There are people I haven't talked to in years. There are people I have superficial conversations with only, and others that I only call or hear from when one of us is drunk or needs something. Maybe that's still friendship though. Maybe it just has different shapes and sizes. Maybe friendship has to be messy to work. Maybe it gets easier.
Somebody this weekend asked why I hadn't mentioned all the wonderful friends I made when I was in Dublin in my other blog. Boy was that an eye opener. I told him it was because then I would have had to mention the horrible roommates I had as well. That's the truth...not all of it, but still very true. The whole of it was I didn't know how to talk about them without saying that they kept me sane. I had horrible roommates, but I had some of the most amazing friends a person could ask for. And I didn't tell people because I didn't want anything to taint that friendship. They kept me sane. When things got really really really bad, I could find comfort in the fact that there were only X amount of days till the next time I saw them at the pub or the movies or whatever.
How do you tell the amazingly supportive people who got you somewhere about the people who carried you through some bad times when they couldn't? How do you tell your new found friends that they mean the world to you without making it seem like your 'older' friends weren't enough, even though that's not true? And most importantly, how do you do it without losing it because you know you have to leave? That these people who mean the world to you aren't going to be there forever. That's not to say they're just going to walk out of your life, although some will, and some already have for me, but you're not going to get to see them anywhere as often as you are now. That the time you have with them is bittersweet because they're there, in person, and you're looking at them knowing once you go home, it's over, they're going to slip quietly through your fingers and out of your life, and you can't stop them. How do you tell them that? How do you deal with that? How do you deal with the ache of knowing something's missing? Or even worse, there's no way to fix it?
I don't know about you, but I hold tight to the memories and try desperately to stay in touch but sometimes its so damn hard. Sometimes its not enough. Sometimes it heals. Sometimes it hurts. Sometimes you drown yourself in other people. Sometimes there's nothing left to do but pour yourself another shot of whiskey and wallow in the ache and know that while it might just be easier to let them all slip away you have to have faith in the worth of fighting for them. And hope like hell its enough.
In the words on Janet Evanovich's character Ranger in To The Nines, "there's all kinds of love" and they need not all come with a ring. To my friends, if you're reading this and I haven't told you recently, I love you, I cherish you, and I miss you when you're not around.
I had other things to say, my dears, and this has certainly taken a very depressing turn, but I think it needed to be said. So for now, I'm going to call home and talk to my family. And then I'm going to get the bottle of Jameson and have a drink or two before bed. We'll play catch up later. Stay safe.
P.S. I apologize for any non-sensicalness of the above. And yes, I know that's not a real word. Shhhh.