Friends Are a Lifeline…and so Much More
We had some friends over for supper last night. This couple was one of the very first to reach out to us after my husband’s arrest. On that night, we ate supper at their house and not a word was mentioned about his arrest; it was kind of an awkward evening. The following weekend, I went over to visit with the wife for a little while…that turned into five hours of sharing anger, frustration and desperation on my part.
We’ve seen them usually at least once a week ever since. They’ve become close friends and we always have a good time with them. They came over last night and we laughed a great deal of the time. They are precious people and dearly loved friends.
Until nearly nine months ago, my husband and I had spent several years isolated and content (or so we thought) with our own company. Both of us fear rejection from others, albeit with different protective behaviours. When my friend says she likes being around me, my brain still goes right to “if she REALLY knew me, she wouldn’t like me.” (In the top five list of borderline thinking.) Yesterday morning she sent me a text saying she would call me in a bit; she didn’t call all morning or early afternoon. I surmised that she didn’t want to talk to me. This swing to the worst possible scenario is why my therapist says I see things only in black or white.
She’d left her phone at home and doesn’t have my number memorized because it’s stored in her phone. Gray, gray, gray.
But I digress. I have to learn to stop being so protective of myself. Yes, there will be people who don’t like me even though I like them. I have to learn to handle that without thinking horrible thoughts about myself. And I have to enjoy to the max the dear friends who really do like me because they are a lifeline, a comfort, an evening of laughter, a shoulder to cry on, an acceptor of my flawed personality. They’re a glimpse of Jesus in this chaotic world.