I thought I would take a break from the professional jargon for one day and share a personal reflection. Please forgive my obvious self-indulgence.
When I was insane, all those years ago, I rarely understood what I had. I was overwhelmed by grief, drowning in my own head. All those years ago…
I have already written, in fact just recently, about my visit this summer with my mate Steve. Many things have changed in my life but he never did. While we were visiting my wife and Steve’s wife, Susan, talked about those bad days so many years ago. Susan may be forgiven her tiny betrayal, if perhaps because it was a small sin done in kindness and compassion. Annette asked Susan if Steve ever talks about that time and she said, “Steve never talks about it and the one time he did say anything it was only, “She left us.”
“She left us”. It staggered me when I heard it. A friend so close that he felt the sting of betrayal as only family could, and took it personally. Far from being offended I was humbled. That’s loyalty. I realized, probably for the first time, that there were friends who suffered beside me, in spite of my feeling so very alone.
I can recall, with vivid detail, the faces of those who had told me they were the most faithful of friends. People who, when the going got tough, bailed because it was too messy. Steve wasn’t one of those people. I’m thinking of a few friends locally as well. A few friends in Alberta and Saskatchewan and other points much farther away. Friends who aren’t easily frightened by my fallenness and not shocked when I have failed.
“She left us”. Three small words that have changed my life. Again.