About a month ago we were at a party. It really wasn’t a special night, like every party I have been to in the last few years, milling around sipping pints of microbrew, looking at walls lined of prints of post modern art and pictures of different adventures that the owner had embarked on.
There was an interesting mix of people some young, some old, some familiar faces, some not, some dressed in outfits that cost hundreds of dollars, some bought at Value Village.
What made this night special was the way that he interacted with everyone in the room; everyone became his friend. Whether they were blonde, brunette, short, tall, wearing an Armani sweater or a two-dollar shirt.
When he spoke people smiled, his attitude was positive, his conversations were engaging, when being around him you simply felt better about yourself.
In life we meet and befriend many different people. Friends change, no matter what the reason we find ourselves gaining new friends and losing touch with others.
Occasionally though, there are special people that come into our lives, they touch us in a special way. They have special qualities and traits that allow us to form a connection that is stronger than we feel with others; those people become our best friends.
I am lucky; I have had my best friend for as long as I can remember.
There is just something about him, he is never without a smile on his face and appears to have undying energy.
It is incredible to see him take on challenges in life.
A few years ago he wanted to write, he simply had something to say. At first he was told he was too wordy, his stories went on too long and that he didn’t have any talent.
That was enough to push him to write every chance he had and within a year he was being paid to write for several publications.
His motivation is incredible; he appears to never sleep, sharply focused on a task until the project is complete.
He finds time for anyone, to listen, to comfort, to have compassion, to share, to love, to simply do whatever he can do.
He never stops learning, reading or researching.
Each week there is something new I learn from him, it could be a passage from a Dostoevsky novel or the statistics of the newest player on the Boston Bruins.
Visits to the art gallery, rock climbing, hiking, the theatre or just driving to a place that he has never been, he is always up for almost any experience.
He wants to do everything and he wants to share it with everyone.
As I describe him to you, share his numerous magnificent qualities, I am greatly saddened that he is gone and may never come back. Tears fill my eyes as I write this, because I am the one who has asked him to leave.
I ask myself this question every night as I push down and twist off the childproof top on my medication. As I take a sip of chamomile tea and swallow the six pills I take at night in addition to the six I take in the morning.
I hope he comes back, that I wake up, look in the mirror and once again see his smiling face knowing that his energy will help me throughout my day and that his confidence will become my confidence.
Instead I see someone who has none of the qualities of his best friend.
I have lost a piece of myself, a huge piece of myself, my confidence, my energy, my lust for life, my motivation, my ambition have all seemed to have disappeared.
It used to be easy; he would never let me down.
No matter how down I was, for how long, he never judged me, never held anything against me.
No matter how much I pushed him away, he would always come back into my life and grab a hold of me and take me on a ride that Walt Disney would be jealous of.
The rollercoaster went very, very high and it eventually had to come down and every time it did the down became more dangerous than the last.
There have been too many voices that have advised me to ask him to leave. Doctors, friends and family have all urged me to keep taking five milligrams of this and 15 milligrams of that.
As long as I listen I fear that I will never see him again.
I have to work like I have never worked before to find a new best friend.
Somewhere in my brain, somewhere in my mind, somewhere in my soul is a best friend waiting to be awakened. There to support me, tell me I am worthwhile, that I am loveable, that I am smart, funny, good looking, all of the things that right now I don’t believe.
One day I will find something that makes me feel the way I once did.
I will do everything I can to find what I have lost. To look in the mirror and see the person that I know I am and can be.
That challenge is tough and that road is long.
The effort it takes to chart my moods, journal, practice yoga, run, stabilize my sleep patterns, socialize, address my nutrition, attend my support group as well as make and keep appointments with my psychiatrist and therapists is worth it.
Why? Because each day I come to realize that I am closer to making the acquaintance of a new best friend, but this time one who will be with me for the rest of my life.