Saturday, October 18, 2008

A Small Taste of the Other Side

So…it’s been a weird time for me. Lots of things going on in my inner life I suppose. I’m not even sure how to write this particular entry so please bear with me.

One thing that has been going on is the sudden absence of a new friend. I’m not sure how to process the situation for several reasons but I will share as much as I am able to here, or try to in the least. It’s hit me partly because it comes when I need time to myself as well and so he is on my mind. For different reasons, for different purposes I am taking a break, because obviously we are two different people.

Or I should start by sort of identifying this friend?

I mentioned previously about being in a period of making new friends. One group in particular seems to have taken me in. I would say perhaps their main or most constant vehicle of bonding is a weekly bible study. I have joined them only a few times so far.

The one missing I shall refer to as Pirate. Anyone in the group whom might read this is gonna know who I’m talking about anyway and no, he’s not a real pirate. As far as I know.

So, Pirate has missed the last two BS meetings. The first one, I suppose wasn’t too much of an alarm to the group though Pirate rarely misses one I gather.

I cannot speak for Pirate on why he is absent.

And Pirate did notify the group that he was taking a [temporary] leave of absence. The notice came some time between the first and second missed meetings. Last week, the second missed meeting but the first after the notice, the expressions of missing Pirate were more serious. One member’s prayer request was a solemn request that Pirate answer his phone.

Here’s where it gets more personal.

I have been known to go on a “retreat” from time to time, as Pirate seems to be doing now. Different reasons, different purposes. Most people don’t realize I’ve retreated because…for whatever reason. They just know that they haven’t seen me for some time and then I reappear. My retreats have been of varying degrees and lengths.

For one time in particular, something suddenly triggered a serious retreat and I started for home. I realized I was supposed to meet Apple that day so I called her to say I wasn’t going to be there. She picked up the unwell tone in my voice, but I couldn’t tell her what was going on and just hung up.

I knew she would worry. I knew she loved me. I was unable to reach out. Not for months.

When I came back, Apple was angry. Justifiably so.

But Apple has been blessed with the gift of patience, forgiveness, with a great compassion that I admire. With time and a lot of work, we came together again. We are very close friends today. I am blessed with her friendship.

To pick up the concern on the faces of this group, to hear how they miss Pirate so, I feel it deeply. I am perhaps getting a glimpse of what Apple went through when I went missing.

What I’m saying to Apple is I am sorry. It is never my intent to hurt you though I know I have at times. I appreciate you and I love you.

What I would say to Pirate is that I think I can understand, to some extent. I hope you will find your way back soon. Your friends miss you greatly.

And I miss you.

Mahalo for reading.

[I wrote this on the 13th, last Monday, so some things might have happened since but I thought I’d post it anyway.]