A long time ago – 7 years? 10 years? – I frequently spent time with two women friends, going to plays and to restaurants, enjoying our city’s great culture. I was flexible, following their lead, to create a harmonious atmosphere. Until I suddenly woke up and didn’t want to any more. Out with them separately, as well as together, I found that I evidently did not measure up to their standards for food or for plays or for music. I began to notice that what I wanted to do was not on their lists, and that I needed to go / attend / eat where they wished in order to have a pleasant evening.
I love a variety of restaurants always, plus many different cuisines, and lots of different kinds of theater, from the Know, raucous and boundary pushing, to Cincinnati Shakespeare’s classics, and the Ensemble somewhere in between. As well as small theater groups all over the tri-state area. Variety is my middle name, essentially. All kinds of creativity make me happy!
So I simply became busy doing other things, wasn’t able to work their events into my schedule. One of them noticed and made an overture, but I was just done, and was not ready to have a discussion or hash anything out or compromise. I had had my fill. Through several circumstances, the other reappeared in my life recently, and wanted to be involved in something that I do, which I love. No sooner did she come to one gathering, than she began to do what she had done before – began to shape that gathering to fit her needs. After we agreed to shift the meeting date to allow her to attend !!!, she then needed the time of the gathering to change. And then that new date didn’t work either, so perhaps we could pick this particular date, which worked better for her.
I then had a dream, where all of us in the group were swimming in a bright and beautiful pool, like happy little dolphins. She came into the group, and started to build a den, like a bear’s den, at one end of the pool, so she could be comfortable! A den! In a swimming pool!
I did not simply walk away. I talked the dream through with one of my friends in that group. And a couple of days after waking from that dream, I called her to talk, and laid out what I had previously seen and what I was seeing now. I told her that I understood her need to be comfortable, but that our group was unwilling to change to provide her that comfort. She could, if she wished, try again, at our time and place and arrangements.
Her explanation to herself, and to me, was that there was a scheduling conflict, and she was sorry that her plans did not fit with our schedule, so she would not be able to attend. I simply agreed. She then mentioned the cancer death of another friend of ours, and how wrong she felt my behavior had been. Good heavens. I had done what I do, and mentioned some other healing possibilities, and then again one more time, and then let it go.
Then a few days later, I received a note from her, about how sad it was that the past had gotten in the way of our present. Another good heavens. My thought was that she had dragged that past into the present, and was unable to come into our group and our culture and our patterns and simply be with us, and see what would happen.
I am writing this out as an act of cleansing, to make myself feel better, and to better be able to let it go.