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Grieving What Once Was: So, Are We Still Friends?

We have all heard that saying: Life happens. We meet some great people. We text and call each other at the craziest times, share hilarious situations that happened at parties, 4 a.m. IHOP runs, impromptu road trips, and having sleepovers. Then, BOOM! Someone goes to graduate school and the other is climbing the corporate ladder. Calls become less frequent. Visits are impossible because of conflicting schedules and distance. And, eventually, proximity makes room for building new friendships.

Pick Up Where We Left Off

This is what basically happened to someone I still deem a great friend. I hoped that our friendship would pick right back up from where we left off. However, as we started to acclimate to the distance, new interests and opportunities in our immediate surroundings, it made that difficult to accomplish. Moving back to Houston did not revive our once lively and close friendship. I started to question what I did to push her away. I called and texted to set up lunch dates or spa days, only to find that her schedule was filled with trips, lunch meetings with business executives, family time, etc.

So Many Questions

This was discouraging! The new state of our friendship had me questioning many things. I grew jealous as I heard my husband and his best friend laugh hysterically about random things over the phone as if the several thousand miles between them did not exist. I ruminated on the notion that I probably was not as good a friend as I should have been when I moved cities. I wondered if I could return the years of graduate school to have what we used to have. I thought I was being irrationally territorial, then it dawned on me: I was grieving how our friendship used to be. I  was not prepared for this transition, this change.

Longing for the Good Ol’ Days

Despite the fact that she planned my Bachelorette party and stood next to me on my wedding day, I wanted to mold us back into how we used to be. I did not appreciate the development of her growth and wisdom, nor mine. We both changed, but she grew with the fact that we were still friends…I was struggling.

Change is Good

I soon realized that I was grieving what once was. We had stepped into a new phase of our friendship. It was hard to come to terms with the notion that her super friendly and inclusive personality made everyone feel like she was their best friend, not just mine. Through my grieving process, I cried, somewhat bargained, was confused and upset. But I now understand that growth and development in friendship includes learning how to adjust to the changes in life. It does not mean that the friendship is dead. Change is good and so is our friendship! 

For more information on adjusting to phases of life, please contact AWCC at 832-421-8714.


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