Tuesday, May 14, 2024

My Current Existential Crisis

I've never been very good at setting boundaries and putting my foot down when it comes to the people I call friends.  I mean I eventually do it but by the time I do, it's too late.  They are like hey when I kicked you in the stomach last week you didn't say anything, why are you making a big deal about it now?

I wrote about this last year.

We talked in January for her birthday but not since.  I figured time just moved quickly for her and she was waiting for my birthday for our next live talk.    Her text didn't mention calling to chat, but her card did, so a few days later I texted about it.  She said she's on a crazy schedule for the next few weeks and would let me know when she catches a break.  

I got a birthday text and a card from Jewel last week.  In the card she wrote that it has been way too long since we talked and wants to catch up in 3 weeks after her daughter's wedding.  So let's unpack this.  She couldn't find a few minutes in the last 49 weeks to chat with me for 20-30 minutes and now is too busy for the next three weeks.  And then she will want to talk about her daughter's wedding.  

seems appropriate

A few years ago, when I lost my job at Big Audit, I sent an email to a small group of friends I thought gave a shit.  Most responded.  One person didn't.  But a month later I was on Gmail at the same time and she said "Sorry you lost your job."  if I hadn't been online at the exact same time I might never have heard from her.  

I get that email isn't her thing, though she works in Corporate America and certainly works with email.    She could reply with a "Hey sorry this happened, you know I'm not a big emailer but if you want to jump on Gchat, I'm available. "  But her way has to carry the day. 

Our friendship was damaged (technically a 2nd time but I won't go into that). 

Back to Jewel.  Chances are good it will slip her mind.  She's not big on Social Maintenance and perhaps once enough time passes, she will forget like last year.  On the other hand, she keeps the number of friends around her small because she's not big on Social Maintenance and Friendship Obligations.  She likely has bored to death anyone she interacts with Tales of Wedding Planning.  

And this is where I have to decide what I want to do.  I could take the call and the crumbs she throws me occasionally so that I have someone to talk to in my Southern Isolation.  Or I could punt it away with my own unavailability.  I could tell her how she hurt me but all that will happen is she might acknowledge, apologize, promise and then never reach out again.  

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