Last night I talked with Ben about cutting my hair, and he said he understood my reasons and he would support me 100% -- but he said it would make him very sad if I shaved my head, and he asked me not to cut it shorter than 4 inches. I'm okay with that, I think. That's a radical enough change for me. I've never had my hair cut shorter than collarbone-length. I felt so loved -- he's always adored my long hair, yet he's happy to part with it if it will be a forward step in my healing. I have such an amazing man.
And I'm really looking forward to having curly hair again (the length is so heavy it pulls all the curl out). I told Ben it would be curly, and he said, "how curly?" and I pointed to the stubborn little corkscrew wisps that frame my face -- he got this odd grin on his face and said, "I think I would like that."
I was thinking about Kaylene today... She's still a very important person in my life -- even though she hasn't been in contact with me for a good while now. She and I met at "Breakthrough To Joy" (a sort of general group counseling to help you get rid of some of your old baggage) -- the moment I saw her it was like I recognised her, and I felt like I needed to get to know her. We were in the same small group (6 people) and so we learned a lot about each other, and since we lived fairly close, I'd give her rides to Breakthrough sometimes. Then I asked her if she wanted to hang out sometime -- and we went out and talked for several hours about everything. I adored how honest she was, how blunt. As I was driving her home, I fought with my fear and finally asked her, point-blank, if she wanted to be deep friends with me, totally honest and open and supportive and all that. She said yes, and that she had wanted to ask me the same thing. I was flabbergasted -- nobody EVER had matched me in boldness of trust before. And so we did. We became deep friends. Yes, just like that.
Then I asked her to be a bridesmaid, and went through the whole wedding thing (this was a very hectic period, I was planning a wedding, working full time, and going to school full time, plus Breakthrough) -- she spent the night with me before the wedding, and I was laying on the floor frantically beading the bridesmaids gift necklaces (which I still haven't finished) and complaining about how I wasn't going to get any sleep, and she told me that they'd understand, and to go to sleep, so I did... then I woke up late and she calmed me down again, telling me that they couldn't start without me, so who cares if I'm late? It all went perfectly...
Then after Ben and I got married we rented a room from a couple, and Kaylene rented another room, so we were living in the same house -- it was awesome. I was blissed out -- my perfect man and my closest friend, right there all the time. She had a job but no car, so I sometimes drove her to and from work, and sometimes let her take my Sylvia -- more than once I even got up early to take her to work -- that's true love my friends.
Then life came crashing down on her. She had two huge debts storming at her demanding to be paid, she was making puny money at her part-time job, and the couple we were living with wouldn't let her have her boyfriend spend the night, which made her feel like a child. Ben and I had very little money, so we couldn't help... she ended up going to live with her mom and stepdad again, and shortly after that she moved in with her boyfriend. She just withdrew from me, stopped reaching out or reaching back, and I could rarely get in touch with her -- I didn't have a phone either, so I could only call her on other people's time and she couldn't call me back.
I was angry for a few days. Furious, in agonizing pain. I gave her so much of my heart, and she left me. But I understood why she did it. It hurt too much. She was trying openness for the first time which is painful in itself, and then her past almost literally came shrieking after her and attacked her spirit. I don't blame her for snatching her shell back up before her past had a chance to tear her to ribbons.
I forgave her. I didn't want to be angry, I wanted to cherish what little we had had, so I let go. God showed me how he had worked it all out so perfectly for us to be together for that time, and he had a purpose in it -- and I have every confidence that we will be deep friends again, even if it isn't this lifetime. But it still hurt -- I mourned for months. The pain gradually lessened, and now I feel nothing negative about her whatsoever. I don't resent her for 'deserting' me, I'm not angry, I'm not in pain, I'm not uncaring.
Part of what made all of that so amazing is the fact that I didn't hold a grudge. I've had my closest friends all desert me in one way or another, and with most of them I held a grudge until they apologised (if they did). It's quite possible that Kaylene didn't ever realise she hurt me, and that's okay. I'm okay with that because I truly forgave her, mourned my loss, and now I'm healed -- it's past. That gives me hope for myself, that I am able to forgive so completely.
I still love her so much. She believed in me and pushed me to achieve my dreams -- she believed in me in a way that no one else has, because she understood the depth of my passion. I wish I could explain better. We shared so deeply that she will always be an integral part of my heart, even if I never see her again on earth, and I will never forget her and never love her less. If I am ever in a position to help her, I will do whatever it takes.
I wonder if I had as much of an impact on her as she did on me. I hope so, not because I want her to need me, but because I want her to have been as stretched and enriched as I was by our friendship.