Third Sis rolled her eyes at me (as usual ha) a few weeks ago when I told her I’d recently deleted (‘unfriend’) some folks from my FB (just did it again tonight… I spring clean often). “This is why your network is so small,” is not an uncommon phrase thrown nonchalantly my way. The weekend before, as a group of us high school alumni were discussing the possibility of a reunion, our teacher (my favorite and closest one, until now) chimed in and while pointing to me, said, “But don’t ask her to handle the invitations! You’ll get no one.” Not… untrue. These days I find that my first year circle in Miri has disintegrated; circles generally fizzle and blur now that we’ve more or less settled into our roles and better understand – and try to meet – the demands of our workload. This – or I’ve never had that many friends to begin with. For the past 2-3 months now, my lunchtime is often spent quietly and alone; I’ve also thus taken to running errands in this hourlong break.
I thought of this the other day: how we have friends for all seasons and reasons …and how this is especially true for myself. Different friends fill different cavities and compartments in our hearts – at least, this is (again) how it is for me. Each individual, locked in a moment in time (‘era’; ‘chapter’), is an investment – usually emotional – that I choose to spend my resources on. The older I grow, the more I lean on and live by the wisdom of “I just need a few people on my team.” I don’t seek wide, choosing instead to dig deep. This has always, somehow, been my MO.
But the thing about holding onto and investing precious resources on other people is that they are transient. Friends always leave. Sometimes they disappear; other times we simply outgrew each other. We are, all of us, at the end of the day – moments to one another.
Of course every so often we return to each other; reunite. The gatherings and get-togethers are undoubtedly a lot of fun. But these moments too, they pass. A borrowed hour, so tiny it is akin to a dot quickly lost in infinite space. And when there is only so few of them – a deliberate decision, after all – their null space quickly becomes a blackhole.
I do not know how to want a large group; how to thrive in one; how to put on a mask when I have only ever lived bare-faced; how to not invest in people, temporary beings that they are, and ultimately how to outlive a moment – how to quit giving myself away to mere moments and undo the knowledge they’ll live on for many moments in my heart.
I am alone again.