Some relationships end.
All relationships change.
Often, it’s hard to let go.
“You’re so brainwashed,” he said to me, and I knew our friendship had changed.
I met up with some friends last week, some of which I had not seen in quite some time. It can be wonderful to meet up with old acquaintances, but also difficult when you see that you’ve grown apart.
Still, you try, if nothing more than for the sake of your shared history, the good memories. You try to remember what it was that you had in common, what you went through together. But the question remains: would I be friends with this person if I first met them today?
Next, you wonder why things have changed. The answer, of course, is always the same: I have changed. And they have changed.
Life continually impacts us, making us cement some positions, softening others. Our perspective shifts to best navigate our reality, so we will never even see the world as we did before.
“You’re so brainwashed,” he said at dinner with old friends, a trice of vitriol making everyone at the table shift and stir uncomfortably. The conversation progressed from just catching up and talking about families and kids to our respective careers and then business. One old friend didn’t agree with my thoughts, so that’s how he chose to respond.
What happened to polite discourse?
Why can’t reasonable people have reasonable conversations?
Did my friend change so much over the years? Or was it me and my worldview that was now unrecognizable and so distasteful to him?
Moving through this game of life, we are all supposed to change.
We evolve, we grow. Hopefully, we will evolve, as there is nothing worse than stagnation.
Through our trials and tribulations, we become a version of ourselves – the optimized human being we’re supposed to be.
That growth means sometimes shedding people, places, and childish ideas from our past. The difficult part is mourning those losses without regretting them. I love the notion that we can “love people from afar” who are no longer positive or healthy in our lives. Forgive and get on with it.
But we also have to remind ourselves that the most important part of moving forward…is first letting go.