The Supreme Court legalized same sex marriage in all 50 states today. I. Am. Thrilled. I really am.
However. There’s a post I’ve been meaning to write, for, like, the last three years. And what I’ve seen today on Facebook, it’s given me the final push to write it, plus give it the ending it was lacking.
About four years ago I got to hanging out in with a friend I grew up with. I mean, as far back as I can remember, T was in my life. By some weird twist of fate she wound up marring a guy here in Alaska and living 6 hours (by car) from me. You’d think we’d take advantage of childhood/teenage friends winding up in the same state after college (and Alaska no less) and hang out pre-kids. But no, we weren’t that smart. Instead, after we had kids is when we wound up getting together.
You know what I realized? That 7 years later, kids were the only thing we had in common. This was someone I had sleepovers with, we told each other all the stupid little teenage girl crushes/dreams/hopes/fantasies like girls will do. When T’s family was moving out West, our little group got together and had this big sleepover, stayed up all night, cried together about how unfair it was – very 17 year old girl stuff. It was terrible, awesome, but terrible.
And now, unless we were talking about our kids, we had nothing, absolutely nothing, to talk about. I cried on my way home. It broke my heart that someone I had been so close with for 15 or so years, was practically a stranger to me. It was nothing either of us did. Our lives just happened and we walked different paths. It happens. We’re still “Christmas Card” friendly, but that’s it, that’s as far as it goes.
I was raised Mormon. A lot of friends from that period have fallen in the same category with T. I honestly have a lot of “For Nostalgia Reasons” people on my friends list.
My friends list. I have many, many different viewpoints on my friends list. I mean, we span all political factions, rude in your face atheists to bible thumping right wing Christians. I’ve found that I am a master of glossing over/forgetting offensive material and stopping any convos that will cause a rift. It’s worked great so far.
Until today. Today, when the Supreme Court made their ruling, I saw some of the worst, hateful, offensive, vile, ignorant and rude words come from the keyboards of people I have known for most of my life. These are people I consider family. They helped me and my family through some pretty dark moments in our history.
And they broke my heart with their words.
I just, it hurts to know that people I once felt so close to can be so mean and hateful.
I had to go through my friends list and remove them. It was hard, so very hard to do that. These are people with families that I grew up with. People that I’ve truly loved keeping up with and seeing how everyone is doing on their own path in life. People who helped me see the light when I seemed to be surrounded by nothing but darkness.
I have spent the last few years working on getting to where I’m at right now. I’m getting past my negative body issues, getting in shape, finding a job I love, becoming financially stable and secure…. I have a great husband and amazing kid.
In short, I’m good. I really am. The feeling of letting go and walking away from anything that brings me down or makes me unhappy, of adopting a “whatever happens, happens” mentality… it’s amazing. It has done wonderful things for my mental health.
More and more the things that have been said online have picked at my brain long after I read them. Questions of “how can they be so ignorant?” or “why do they have to be so hurtful?” started to surface.
So, I had yet another reminder that people aren’t always going to be the same throughout my life. Just because we were once so very close, doesn’t mean we always will be. It sucks, it really does, but that’s what happens. It’s life, people grow and grow apart. Doesn’t take away from what you once had together, just means you need to redefine the friendship and reevaluate that person’s place in your life, and more importantly, in your head.
Based on this very recent reminder of people growing apart, I made a decision. To avoid backsliding on my new awesome life path, I made the heartbreaking decision to cut out people that are causing negativity in my head. I’m not angry, disappointed yes, but not angry with their words. I’m simply choosing to forget the hateful words of today, unfriending them, and choosing to remember the person who helped me see the light when I seemed to be surrounded by nothing but darkness and who was as close to family as you can possibly get without a court date.
And the flip side to this, I made sure to tell everyone they have the same option. If I’m not the person they remember me to be, and want to remember me the way I was, they are free to unfriend me, and I won’t think any less of them.
It’s just life, it sucks, but it is what it is.
I go to bed tonight with a hurting heart, but with much understanding and peace.