Friends and Freedom

So, this past weekend, I had the opportunity to take a quick trip to the big city and spend some time with a very dear friend. We shopped. We ate. We talked incessantly. It was fantastic.

It’s interesting, but during this minor detour of my life, I have discovered that there truly is a big difference between “friends” and “real friends”. Oh, we hear about it all the time. That the tough times show you who your real friends are… but I never had the opportunity to witness it until now. And it’s true. When life starts sucking, some people will stick by you and others will shrug, give their condolences and continue on their merry way. Especially when it comes to something like the ending of marriages. Especially when they’ve been friends with both of you.

It was definitely hurtful when my “couple friends” refused to “take sides” and instead offered their “prayers” and their “support” – clearly evident in their silence and lack of communication. At such a heartbreaking, hurtful time, the thing I needed most was for people to “take sides” – to tell me that what he did was wrong and inexcusable. That no “Christian” husband has a right to just walk away from their marriage vows to find their “true happiness”. That no matter what I needed – whether it be cake balls or a shotgun – they’d be there for me. Oh, and to tell me he’s an asshat, loser, and jerk and that I’m strong, beautiful and deserve so much better. Those are the friends you need during the devastating times. Surround yourself with those people – not the ones who will question you, blame you, second guess you, undermine you and your decisions. Because those are the ones who are the real, true friends.

And it was one of those friends I found myself spending the weekend with. It was fantastic and so very much needed. But it was weird too. Because this dear friend and her husband had been one of “our” very first “couple friends”. We did a lot together. I rarely ever saw them without the asshat. And now… well, the asshat was very much absent during this visit and for very good reasons. But it was weird. It felt weird to be single again. It felt weird to be visiting couple friends alone. It felt weird to climb into bed during such a visit without him. It was weird not to have someone to carry my bags in, to plan arrival and departure times with, to check in with.

And yet… it felt kind of exciting too. Because, I was free. I didn’t have to think about anyone else’s needs but my own. I didn’t have to worry about anyone else. I could make choices solely for myself. And… It. Was. Awesome.

Free!

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