THE END OF FRIENDSHIP

I must have said this phrase about 100 times since Carol and I decided to move to South Carolina. “We moved (are moving) because most of our friends have either moved away or died. That, along with the decimation of our synagogue (100 members when Carol was prez to about 30 or so now) caused us that there was little to keep us in the Harrisburg area.
A more succinct answer may have been that some long term friends have gone their ways and have not taken us with them. Do you ever wonder if you were in a serious jam, who would you call to bail you out (excluding your family and your children and grandchildren). I often think that there a precious few people that would drop everything and come to your rescue. When the list was at its zenith, there were about four or five names on it. Now that list has diminished to one or two. Those who fell off the table have done it with their own volition. Maybe I am being too hard on them. However, when communication stops, except for a card once in a while, or maybe nothing at all, I am prone to writing people off. My final communication is usually be email and says, “Goodbye (insert name), best of wishes to you.” That seems to do the trick. In some cases I did it to one person about four years ago. There has been no communication with him since.
If you are thinking that this is sad, it is not. My life is pretty complete as it stands. I have no problem with hooking on with people and do it regularly. I am not in some kind of grand funk over losing these people. Their choice to absent themselves from my life is a matter of conditions. There were historical reasons, not personal reasons, that we were friends. We shared some sort of purpose, which now is absent. I can actually see why they might want to go their separate ways. I bid them a fond farewell.
Those who have left me because of death remain in my life, no matter the circumstances of my life. They left this earth as my friend and will never be anything other than that. When my good friend John died a few weeks ago, I tucked him away on this blog and keep him in the forefront of my mind. Others who have left for the Elysian Fields have added a portion of great goodness to my life. They will always be a part of me till I die.
I am sometimes criticized for cutting people off so completely. Those who know me best understand that I am always a committed friend. There are no halfway friendships in my heart. I do not expect perfection in a friendship, but I aspire to a higher level of relationships. It has been that way since I can remember. If you believe that I am sometimes disappointed, you are correct. I am also sometimes disappointed in myself. It goes both ways. Carol believes that I hold a grudge for a long while. Maybe I do. However, as I get older, I have fewer and fewer rules, but those that remain are pretty deep.
As you read this, and you can understand my ramblings, you might want to think of your own friendships, as they have developed through the years. Maybe having a few good friends at my age is pretty darned good.

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6 thoughts on “THE END OF FRIENDSHIP

  1. I believe we trust and support a friend. The historical events build a bond that is always there and distance does not mitigate this friendship and while not current, the elements of this relationship are always there. You and I discussed this when you announced your move and that friends are limited but take little explanation. Probably a willingness to act on and demonstrate acceptance of each other’s strengths and weaknesses is the key.

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