Hmmmmmmmmmm. That's what I say when I'm thinking. I'm thinking. This week has been emotionaly overload (not helped by the fact that it was a pms week, emotional overload in itself...)
Just read two things that made me think (the best things to read): my bff's blog, and Tuesdays With Morrie (I read the whole thing in 2 hours. It's that good.) My bff said in her blog that relationships were the hardest part of her life. She just meant relationships in general, not you know, male-female/sexual/etc. Just in general. Morrie said pretty much the same thing. And I thought, Isn't that the point? Isn't that how it's supposed to be?
You see, our lives are built around relationships. Family, friends, significant others. Enemies, acquaintances, strangers. We're told that the whole point of this life is a relationship with Christ. I believe that. It stands to reason that since we're supposed to be like Christ, and a relationship with him is the most important thing, that our other relationships should be the most important things in our lives, and modeled after ours with Him, to a certain degree (I'm not advocating worshipping anything else.) Hear me out.
How many scriptures, Christian songs, pastors and preachers, sunday school teachers and the like proclaim that God will never leave you? That He will be there when you call? That if you seek Him, you will find Him? It's true. I can say that because I have experienced in my own life, on the days when I am celebrating and smiling and happy, and the nights that I am huddling under my blanket, crying silently because I don't let others see me cry. He's always there. On my proposal that our relationships should be modeled after that one... doesn't it seem that we should be there, too, for those we love? And vice versa, of course. I have two examples to share.
The first example I present is my father. My mother, too. You see, the other day I got a full scholarship to a great university that I'll be accepting next week (!). I was over the moon, in every sense of the word. I was celebrating. Lori celebrated. Chris was definitely celebrating, because that's his favorite college team. I called my best friend and my sisters. We were all happy. Why, then, wasn't my father? If he was, he didn't share. He didn't call. My sm did, though... someone who I've never had a normal relationship with. It's always been strained and contorted. But she called, wanting to throw me a party. She wanted to throw me a party! And my father was nowhere in sight. Today, though, I spoke to her about my new phone. Since my phone is on her and my father's account, I couldn't get quoted for a new one without them calling. So I asked her to call. A few minutes later, she called back and told me the phone had been ordered. You may think, that's great! I was furious.
The other day my bff was mad at her boyfriend. She gave him the cheek. She was heated. He sent flowers to her work, and just like that, everything was okay. I told her I was glad they had made up, but that flowers didn't make everything okay. Not for me anyway. At the end of the day, flowers are just flowers. They don't mean anyone really felt anything. I was going to buy the phone myself. I have money saved. I just needed a quote. I was not fishing for a present. I just needed a quote. And he bought it. He bought me flowers, if you will. A bunch. But that doesnt work, not with me. You can't buy love, or forgiveness. You earn it. I'd probably give it, if he asked. He hasn't. A phone does not make up for the months of ignorance and silence and the repeated mistakes. It does nothing for how he makes me feel. He comes, and he goes. He's my father when I win scholarships, but not when on the Tuesday nights when I'm stressing out about college... you know? I'm not a flower girl. Relationships aren't about leaving. They're about being there. That's what He teaches us. Maybe that's why, on the night that I got my scholarship, I cried again. I was happy- extremely. But I was sad, too. Because although it's been almost seven years, I miss my mother fiercly. I wanted to tell her, to see her celebrate and to see her pride. See, my mom made mistakes. But she never left me, until she died. And even then- even now- she's there. She made an impact on me. That's what we all want, right? To change the world? Maybe she didn't change the world, but she changed mine. That's evident everytime I tear up or my hearts pulls because I want to tell her something. That's how a successful relationship ends- with something different than before. Something good.
On the other hand, there are people I have who don't leave. I know this. I realize I am one of the lucky people who know what it's like to be loved. Here's my other example. The other night, I was upset. My father is getting to me. I don't know why. It's never hurt like this before. I felt... unloved. Like, if my own father can't love me and be proud of me and want me and need me... who can? I needed someone to remind me that they did all those things. But it wasn't very convienent. It was nine o'clock on a school night. I was teary, it was cold. Half-joking, I told my bff I needed her. Not joking at all, she said she was on her way. I shook me head and said I didn't really need her. It was late, right? I thought I was successful and that she believed me. But then she was here. She hugged me. She told me it was okay. She said she loved me. She held me while I tried not to cry and then did anyway. She didn't need a lot of words.
She only drove 5 minutes. It's not like she flew across an ocean... right? If she had flown across an ocean, I don't think it would have meant more than it did. It meant the world to me. She could have nought me a house, put in a swimming pool, and invited Dierks Bentley over and it wouldn't have held the same value that that twenty minutes in my driveway did that night.
See, it's the being there that counts. It's the loving other people as much as you lvoe yourself. Can you love everyone that way? Obviously not. You can treat people with respect, but there are certain people you love. That's how you build relationships. That's how you maintain them. My father's $500 phone is a paltry offering compared to visit my best friend gave. And he doesn't get it. That's why it hurts so much. I just want him there, but he's not. He never really has been, but without my mother, I needed him. What I got was Chris and Lori, who are there. And I'm lucky, and grateful.