I never wanted the friendship to end, though I knew it was headed in the direction of finality.
When it was over, it was over quickly. We didn’t drag it out.
I walked away.
I think we could have continued.
If I hadn’t chosen me.
But if I hadn’t chosen me, I would have chosen her and that wasn’t enough for me to be me. To live and love honestly and authentically. To live with my feet rooted into the Earth. To live with courage in my heart to stand up for what I felt was right. To love with all of my soul. To love her.
Though it hurt. And still hurts.
I’m not very good at saying goodbye to people I’ve allowed into my heart—especially the ones who have touched my soul.
Actually, I’m not good at it at all.
I’m also not very good at shaping myself to others’ standards.
If only I had bent, swayed just a little, allowed myself to be molded or shaped a bit like clay—chosen her, instead of me—we might now be sitting together over coffee, planning a weekend dinner or talking about the things we would do together someday.
I could have tried to smooth things over.
I could have tried.
I could have pretended that everything was going to be okay. I could have worked to ignore that gaping hole in my heart.
But I didn’t. I didn’t bend. I didn’t sway either.
I didn’t choose her.
And I miss her.
I often miss her voice and the way she laughed. I miss her smile.
Sometimes when I think about her, I miss her so much that my eyes fill with tears.
But then the tears give way to a smile and a feeling of peace overtakes my being.
If I had a do-over, I’d still choose me. I’d choose to miss her, even though it hurts.
When I miss her, I imagine her standing in the sun—in a space where our friendship once took up space.
I imagine her laughing with a friend that came after me. I imagine her smiling with the friends who chose her. I imagine her planning beautiful life adventures. I imagine her hanging out in the glow of happiness, without me in the picture.
I thank her for the friendship that once was.
Then I thank the universe for helping me find the strength to choose me—and to see the beauty of walking away, letting go and basking in my own light.
Photo: Alia Wilhelm/Unsplash
Julie Tower-Pierce is a lawyer turned author, blogger, yoga instructor and homeschooling mama to four children. When she’s not writing or eating gluten free chocolate cupcakes from home, she can be found somewhere around the globe chasing wanderlust with her children in tow—and even then, she probably has a pen or cupcake in hand.