Saturday, December 06, 2008

Giving Judy a lot of thought

Earlier this week I received an email from a once-close friend who literally broke my heart. Click here for a short version of this sad saga.

I have decided to ignore her message.

It's not so much the incident that blew up our friendship that bothers me. What she did to me was painful and uncalled for, but it was 20 years ago. People can change and grow. At the time that our friendship ended, she was suffering from agoraphobia. She's married now (her last name is hyphenated). So I hope that she got therapy or perhaps spiritual guidance and has found herself on track to a more fulfilling life.


Here's what her email said, in total: "A lot of time has passed--I never read your last letter-felt I would hear things I didn't want to keep in my head/heart. Interested in how you are."

My last letter, written 20 years ago when the incident was fresh, explained in no uncertain terms how hurt I was that she not only accused me of something I would never do, but also that she waited to kick me when I was down. It's bad enough that she threw it away unread, thereby denying me the right to be heard. It's worse that she felt the need to tell me she did it.

I know how it feels to hear things I "didn't want to keep in my head/heart." Like hearing her say that she believed I hit on her boyfriend, and somehow went behind her back to expose their clandestine relationship to her sister. (Her lover once slept with Judy's sister, who considered Judy's action a betrayal; I don't know all the details because, honestly, I wasn't involved.)

Judy made bad choices 20 years ago and blamed me when they blew up on her. Blamed me when I was frightened and bedridden when they blew up on her. I resent that, but I could get over it.

What I can't get past is that she still seems to be operating without concern for the feelings of others. I had a right to be heard -- a need to be heard -- by someone I trusted who hurt me. Yet even now it seems her "wants" still supersede mine.

I have a lot of flaws. I can be short-tempered, impatient and undisciplined. But I AM an involved friend.

What I don't have, to borrow from Carly Simon, is time for the pain. Or the drama that comes from being in the sphere of someone who apparently is still a little low on empathy.

Thanks to everyone who weighed in on this. It was good to take advantage of the objective sounding board this blog offers me. I'm genuinely grateful to each of you.

A timely Saturday 9

I wrote the post below before I saw the topic of this week's meme:

Saturday 9: How Do You Sleep

1. How long do you sleep each night?
Six or seven hours

2. Do you fall asleep easily? Sometimes. If I have to get up early the next morning, I have a harder time going to sleep.

3. Do you fall asleep at times not in your bed? Last night, as a matter of fact.

4. Do you listen to music or use “white noise” to sleep? Yes. I often sleep with the TV on.

5. Do you sleep through the night or get up a couple of times? Once I go to sleep, I'm asleep.

6. Do you have trouble sleeping away from your own bed? Nope.

7. Do you need an alarm clock to get you up? Yes.

8. Do you ever take medication to help you sleep? No.

9. Do you/have you slept with pets? It's up to them. I don't know how they decide when or who gets to sleep on the bed with me over night. My girl cat, Charlotte, hates my big old gray tomcat, Joey, and refuses to be on the same piece of furniture with him, day or night.

Rewarded for dozing off

I fell asleep on the sofa again. Usually I wake up at about 3:30 AM, stumble off to bed, and wake up feeling most unrefreshed when the alarm goes off at 6:00. And I promise myself I'll never do anything so stupid again.

Until this morning.

Unbeknownst to me, at dawn on Saturday mornings, channel 5 runs a show called Open House Chicago, which is really an infomercial for fabulously expensive homes throughout the Chicagoland area. This morning they featured condos in a building I have really wanted to get inside of -- The Palmolive Building.

The Art Deco building was built in the 1920s and, when I was a kid, became The Playboy Building. When Hefner's daughter took over, one of her moves was sell this fabulous building and it was developed for condos. That's when it reinstated the original name. When Vince Vaughn and Jennifer Aniston were a couple, they considered moving here. Today it's home to Cubs' skipper Lou Pinella.

It's right on North Michigan, so I bet all the views are terrific. The rooms obviously have huge windows and, I imagine, high ceilings. But I've never seen inside. Until today!

Hello, Gorgeous! Set-in bookcases, huuuuuge bathrooms and marble fireplaces. I am in love. It would be delightful to live in a building that welcomes me home with a beacon! I simply must win that lottery drawing tonight!