I have a few friends who are in crisis these days, making my own struggles seem trivial. Talking to them is a lot like living in the Twilight Zone. I’m used to being self absorbed.
I have to admit something: I’m not that good at being there for others. Lord knows I try, but I get so stuck in my own head sometimes that it’s hard to see what’s happening around me.
My failure on this front is most evident on the family side. Even before the relationship with my mother imploded, I always sucked at visiting my grandparents and calling siblings. I was always too busy with other things.
Actually, I was always obsessed with other things, some real, some imagined.
When my great-grandmother was dying, I kept meaning to go visit her. The week I finally planned to was the week she died.
I was terrible at visiting my Nana. Instead of loving her unconditionally, I was fixated on her quirks. Here’s the thing with a head case like me: It’s much easier to stew about someone else’s faults than your own. That may sound like a contradiction, since I talk a lot about being stuck inside my own head. But that’s part of the problem. People like me will come outside my own head for a few minutes just to spit on someone else’s quirks.
I’ve paid the price along the way.
I’ve had a lot of friends come and go in my life. Two of the closest friends died on me. It took a long, long time before I was willing to even consider getting close to anyone ever again outside my family.
And, as I mentioned earlier, family relationships suffered.
So here I am, a few years into recovery from OCD and addiction, and people are coming to me for a shoulder to lean on.
God has a way of giving you payback and blessing you with His grace at the same time.
I’m fortunate to have the friends I have, after all the fucking up I’ve done in life.
I hope I don’t let them down.