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Losing Liz

November 6, 2015

I think I’m losing Liz.

We were joined at the hip when we first met, four years ago. We were rarely seen one without the other. She invited me to seemingly every event, party or gathering she attended. And I did the same to her, though she was invited to more things than I was. Then I noticed that she started doing more things on her own. Things I might interested in, sometimes with people who where mutual friends. But it was a natural transition. It was healthy, easy to accept….welcomed even.

Then things started getting randomly weird. She began attacking me in front of others. It seemed at times like she was trying to belittle or embarrass me on purpose. She’s not shy about pointing out her cynical evaluation of many of the men I’ve been interested in. Even people I care deeply about: Z, Mr. Moon, Pumpkin Patch. Even as she encourages me to do what I want to, with no judgement, she hands down verdicts that are a bit stinging at times.

The couple of times I’ve called her out on these attacks, she claimed it wasn’t me, it was her. She was working things out. There were things going on with her family, remaining issues from her marriage etc…  and it was coming out as aggression against me.

I accepted this and even tried to resign myself to being the person she needs to take things out on. I can take it, I think.

I’m not the easiest person to be friends with. I have the subtly of a tyrannosaurus rex. People think I’m mean and cold. I say stupid things more often than a reasonable person should. I have weird contradictions that are hard to understand. I’m easy to dislike. I get it. I accept it most of the time. I don’t need everybody to like me.

I proposed to Liz that this may simply be the case. We met under duress. We were soldiers in a battle. We bonded over common pain and struggle and we supported each other through the fight. Now the fight is over. It’s peace time and maybe we’re looking at each other with different eyes. Maybe there are things about me she just doesn’t like. It’s ok.

She insisted this wasn’t the case. And the attacks stopped.

Last night I met a friend at Pamplona to talk about my upcoming exhibit of photographs. I knew the usual Wednesday crowd would be there. I waved to them occasionally from the other side of the bar as my friend and I somehow delved into a conversation about death and funerals.

Liz walked in after her weekly dinner with her niece and nephew. She was wearing a sleek, black dress that showed off her figure and a prominent silver pendant. She was dressed up. She said hi briefly and joined the Wednesday gang.

By the time my long conversation was over, they had moved out to the patio, a group of about 8 people, crammed into a small space annoying a couple trying to have a private meal in the corner.

I got another glass of wine and joined them.

I don’t know what it was exactly, something about the way Liz looked at me or didn’t look at me. I just felt a disconnection. Like the slow, gradual changes of the past year or so had a reached a quantitative milestone. We were once “Kitten and Pickle,” everywhere together. A team. Now, I feel a gulf between us. When I heard her talking to two mutual friends about going somewhere together the weekend after Thanksgiving, it hid me harder than I expected. That used to be the kind of thing she would include me in. I couldn’t shake the feeling that she just didn’t want me around. Or not around when she was with friends.

She still confides minute details of her personal life to me; her fears, her triumphs, gossip. And she’s still the first person I call to talk me off a ledge, give me permission to contact a love interest, confess some doubt or anxiety. But that’s in private. I just can’t help but think that Liz doesn’t want me to be around her in public.

I’m probably being paranoid and stupid. Maybe my depressive brain is making things up. It does that sometimes.

And even if I’m right. I need to be ok with it. There is no more sacred right then the choice of who you spend time with. I don’t begrudge her that.

I knew this day would come. It’s healthy and inevitable. But it’s still sad. Maybe I need to mourn “Kitten and Pickle,” and accept that we are moving on as separate people. I need to let her move away from me.

I have to let her go.

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From → Rantings

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