Growth as goodbye

I can’t sleep, so here I am.

It’s cold in my apartment, so I just turned on my fancy space heater. My building is quiet; mine is the only light that I spy through my kitchen window. My cat is awake with me, unfortunately. And she’s staring at me, as usual.

I feel rather restless after a nice dinner that ended in a nice hug. I managed about four hours of sleep; I’ll consider that an achievement.

I miss my friend.

I miss our companionship.

So it goes.

I saw my therapist today yesterday and the session was cathartic, even though it left me melancholy. Despite the sequence of events, I may have outgrown my friend, which sounds plausible but also makes me truly sad.

I seem to have a knack for outgrowing people, particularly the ones I care deeply about. It happened with my ex-husband, and it may be happening now.

The idea that my personal growth comes at the expense of relationships is anathema to me, even if the logic is sound. On some level I do believe people come into our lives for a reason, and sometimes that reason may be relatively fleeting. New friends, new lovers, may play important roles in your life before you know it, and then disappear just as suddenly.

But my fear of abandonment makes me clasp tightly to people, so much so that it causes tension and maybe even resentment.

I want to hold on to the people I love with every fiber of my being. I know it can be suffocating; I know it can be exhausting. I’m so sorry.

I don’t like being this way. I’m just afraid. Afraid of being alone, of being misunderstood. Of never being seen. When someone seems to really see me, it’s heaven sent, a beacon, toward… salvation? In the darkness, it’s a lifeline. It’s hope.

Sometimes though, it’s temporary. And I fear that too. Once someone has served his or her purpose, they may leave. What happens to the darkness then? Will it once again encroach, perhaps swallow me whole this time?

How to tell the difference between a lifetime companion, and one around for a season? Can one be infinitely more important to my development than the other?

I do have a wonderful support system. This I can finally acknowledge without hesitation. (Progress!)

I am fortunate to have a variety of friends, from middle school chums who will forever have my back, to newer friends I’ve made through college and various jobs over the years. Since I began writing again, many people out of the woodwork have also expressed a desire to see me, talk to me, be there for me.

Maybe that says something about me that I’m not quite ready to recognize or accept. There must be a reason for people to care, after all. But my rejection of acceptance is just my poor self-image rearing its obtrusive head again.

All this to say that I’m never ready to make my goodbyes with friends. It frightens me to know that it’s a real possibility, even a necessity, sometimes. And that uncoupling can be so painful, and hurtful. But I guess that goes to show the depth of my feeling.

Isn’t it pretty to think so?

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