Relearning a person is an interesting thing.
I recently reconnected with an old friend. I guess “friend” isn’t accurate. We were something more than friends, but something less than partners. We fell in that grey area, an area in which he seemed to be comfortable and where I wasn’t.
At that age, and for the better part of my early twenties, I hadn’t learned how to assert my needs. Because I wanted him, I accepted the terms we were on. Despite my discontent, I drove the hour it took to see him at least once a week, just to be around him and take him in. It was intoxicating.
I remember, towards the end, a trip to Rita’s for Italian ice. It may have been May. I don’t remember the conversation well, but I remember the termination of the relationship. Since the beginning, he insisted on going by his a nickname, but I strictly referred him by his given name. On that day, I decided to call him by his nickname. Two initials that I remembered for years after.
Last Friday, I woke up to a message from him. Seeing his name, my eyes widened, as it has been nearly a decade since we last spoke. He apologized for the way things ended and asked if we could find a friendship. He said that he had regretted the way things ended and had thought about it over the past several years.
I took the opportunity to say my piece, to speak my truth, and to find some amount of closure. I didn’t berate him. I couldn’t. I guess I’m too empathetic. I understood where he was coming from to a degree. And I respected that.
I’m not saying we’ll be the best of friends. What I am saying is that I feel like a wrong was righted. The weight of that relationship was lifted. It wasn’t me; it’s not that I wasn’t worth being with. And I think that’s what I needed the most.
Your song of the night is “Stop Coming To My House” by Mogwai. It was the song I listened to on repeat on the drive home from southern MD that last day. I can let go of that now, too.