I have to say that I am not sure how to start off this post, nor how to write it. I am still trying to gather my thoughts and channel my emotions after learning about the passing of a childhood friend yesterday.
I had known Sarah since elementary school and well....we didn't get along too well when we were young. Both of us were bossy, loud and knew the best way to do things. When we got placed together in school projects or partnered in our Girl Scout troop, we both felt the need to control and manage the other, often leading to tension and spirited words. I still remember in sixth grade when our teacher seated us next to each other and that was the first time I ever got a 'C' on my report card. It was for 'talking during class.' Sarah and I were constantly informing the other person that they were doing the assigned task wrong and insisted on showing the other how to do it properly.
As we entered middle school and high school, our paths separated as our social groups went in different directions. While being friendly acquaintances, we were never very much 'friends,' not due to dislike but rather never seeing one another anymore.
Thanks to the wonders of facebook, we were able to reconnect a little over a year ago and shared sweet words with each other. She was incredibly encouraging about my business and I gushed over how adorable her sweet daughter was.
I am so incredibly thankful for this exchange because it has helped me deal with the guilt that I feel for how I treated her when we were children. As kids, we often say and do things we regret later in life, since we don't quite yet understand the power of our words. I can't remember anything specific that I said to Sarah in anger, but I know that my tone couldn't have been very nice, nor my words.
With all that being said, I do harbor a lot of guilt in general and find myself constantly apologizing for things that I have done. I often end relationships with friends due to mistakes on my end (I'm talking to you Andrea, McKenzie & Naomi) and not being able to handle the guilt and shame that comes with continued contact. For whatever reason, I decide to cut people out, rather than try to work through whatever has come up. It is a nasty habit that I am fully aware of, and try very hard to shake, to no avail yet.
So if you were a friend of mine, and I have done this....I am so sorry. You didn't deserve it. And honestly....it wasn't you, it was me.
To Sarah.....thank you for burying the past and being so kind to me. You really were a wonderful person and I hope as your sweet daughter enters elementary school this fall, she gets seated next to a 5-year-old version of me. They might get off to a rocky start...but they can make it work.