Or is it forgive and never forget? Or is it never forgive but eventually forget? Or my go-to, never forgive and never, ever forget! As my husband always tells me, I love to stew about things and hold on to too many grudges. What brings on this post? I'm glad you asked.
I had the pleasure of reading a short story of mine to a group of wonderful writers this past Friday. High Hill Press held an open mic night at Sage Books in the Frenchtown district of Saint Charles, MO so I figured I'd better start getting my name and works out there for all to hear. My fictional short story incorporated some aspects of my life and starred my alter-ego, Jane. In the story Jane has to come to grips with the fact that people she thought were her best friends pretty much dumped her when they didn't approve of her moving away and getting married. This really did happen to me and it haunts me to this very day.
Five years ago I made the decision to move to St. Louis and start my life anew with the man I knew I would marry and spend the rest of my life with. You would think that would elicit happiness from people you've known for more than ten years and have been with you through pretty much everything. Well, the opposite happened. I can understand that people get upset at the prospect of having a dear friend or family member move far away but you usually accept it and move on with life. Not these people. From the moment I made my announcement they shunned me from our circle of friends and never made an effort to contact me once I had made the move.
Aside from the actual deed, which angers me to no end, what makes me even more angry is that I will never know why they did it. I was too angry and hurt to compose myself long enough to ask why. And they were apparently too angry at me to even bother talking to me at all. The eternal questions of "Why?" and "What if?" are enough to make you crazy.
So what does one do? I can't bring myself to forgive much less forget. But the act of doing neither makes me sick to my stomach which in turn affects my health. As I sit here and type this post Ivan is doing somersaults and apparently trying to stand on his head. It's a vicious circle that I find myself in and I really cannot see the exit sign. I've actually contemplated getting in touch with said friends to get to the bottom of this but I can't bring myself to do it. I even have dreams about it which for me is quite telling. But I feel that that line of communication needs to start with them since they made the initial cutting-off.
This is where I am today and am hoping I don't end up in a funk right alongside Ivan. Man, he is a pesky little monster! What do you all do with situations where you don't know whether to forgive and/or forget?
In the immortal words of the genius that is Leonard Cohen here are some lyrics from his song "So Long Marianne":
I'm standing on a ledge and your fine spider web
Is fastening my ankle to a stone.
Now so long, Marianne, it's time that we began
to laugh and cry and cry and laugh about it all again.
Happy Monday to you all! I shall spend mine thinking about the way the world works and how certain people play certain roles in your life. Everyone we know comes in and out for a reason and it is our job to figure out why and what.