The only thing to take with you is love.

The beautiful glitter of friendship rubs off, one way or another, on both parties.  In a healthy friendship, much like any thriving relationship, people develop a symbiotic partnership in which mutualism takes place.  I wasn’t part of a healthy friendship.  Giving didn’t take place on both sides, and, in turn, an antipathetic symbiosis merged. 

The ins and outs and specific details of friendship will be left out here, as will the reasons why I once loved her and now feel nothing for this person.  Always in life, there are three sides to every story and I cannot expect my readers to believe in my ability to provide an unbiased painting of our friendship. 

But I will share the effects on my own persona.   I lost myself with this person.  You see, this was the most regrettable of all actions considering my fragile state at the end of my last serious relationship.  Once that crumbled and we parted, I had to file a missing person’s report for myself.  Those six years had taken something beautiful away, absconded away with her in the night and all that was left was a brittle shadow of a person that once was.  After searching all the usual spots and other dark areas, I found myself and in that moment I vowed never to lose me again.

Life is funny and sometimes vows, prayers and promises are abandoned for the appeal of something new, be it a new day, beginning or friendship.  She was talkative and flashy, always had something to say and something she wanted to purchase and I loved her for it.  While I will be the first one in line at the mall on my days off, I pride myself on my independent nature.  I work so hard for the dollars I earn.  I save and pay my own bills and work to put myself through my second degree.  After developing a codependent relationship with my longtime boyfriend, I realized that making my own money was my personal aphrodisiac.  I didn’t need him, or anyone.  I could rely on myself.  So while I love shopping and all the girly, feminine, high fashion things that go along with it, I don’t spend out of my means or carry an air of entitlement.  If I can’t afford it, I don’t buy it.  If I date someone, I don’t expect gaudy, over-the-top gifts that I once had with my ex.  All I expect is love, pure divine love, an entity without a price tag.

Soon our friendship took a toll on my heart and I realized I had lost sight of all the personal progress I had made since the chapter of the past slammed shut.  I looked around and suddenly I couldn’t find that independent woman that had emerged from the ashes of the past.  I had become a little too materialistic, a little too lost in myself.  And this was not her fault, understand, this was just the effects of friendship.  That glitter had rubbed off. 

Our friendship ended and I began to take inventory of my life and the things I hold as beliefs.  I know who I am, what I stand for and what I don’t want to become.  I am proud of the woman I have become and cannot believe I almost lost sight of myself for the beliefs of someone else.  I will never be the girl who talks the loudest and owns the most expensive things—I will always be me, just a girl chasing after her dreams and supporting herself on her own.  And that’s the way I want it.  I want to work for what I desire and love with my soul.  I am in love with hope and it is my hope that I will always remember the purpose of life.  All the prized possessions I have collected over the years will soon mean nothing.  But the true and healthy friendships I grow, as well as the bonds with family and loved ones, will prove to be the most prized entities.  When I leave this earth, the only thing I can take with me is love.   Love is the only beautiful thing up for grabs and I hope to take it and run.  I will take the love of all those near to my heart when the time comes.

The thing that sparked this particular blog was a piece of literature. Words move my soul and this book shook my heart.  Mitch Albom’s “Have a Little Faith” is a journey of faith, spirit and pure love.  It is about humanity and learning to find oneself again, amidst even your own doubts and reservations.  I would like to share a passage that helped me to remember a little piece of myself I had forgotten.  The conversation below is between the author (Albom) and his childhood and lifelong Rabbi (Reb).

“When a baby comes into the world, its hands are clenched, right?  Like this?” (Reb)

He made a fist.

“Why? Because a baby, not knowing any better, wants to grab everything to say, ‘The whole world is mine.”

“But when an old person dies, how does he do so?  With his hands open.  Why?  Because he has learned the lesson.”

What lesson, I asked. (Albom)

He stretched his empty fingers. 

“We can take nothing with us.”

 

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