So I've been thinking a lot about pictures as of late. I've also been running into all of my good friends' douchey exes. Really, stellar week. You may wonder how these things connect--the answer, of course, is that my brain is magic.
...Okay, not exactly. But here's the thing:
In the last few weeks I have had several encounters of exes of my girlfriends. These particular girls mean the world to me: they've pulled me through some of the hardest moments in my life, and in turn I've had to see what these particular exes have done to them. Now, I want to go with my "angry best friend" voice and call them terrible people, or rant and rave about them being balding-ginger-douches, but...I won't. While I will call them that on occasion, and I truly do have a lot lower opinions of them than I used to, I also have to play devil's advocate and realize that in every relationship that eventually ends, there has to be a bad guy. Who you put in that role sometimes depends on which side of the fence you land on, who was your friend first, etc.
I am in no way discounting the shitty things these boys did. In fact, I would have loved to have spent the awkward interaction moments with them yelling at them for being morons and raving about how they're the ones who've lost, because obviously losing one of my friends is the biggest mistake of their lives.
I still believe all of that (and girls, you know how much I love you).
But beyond this two-sides-to-the-same-coin outlook that I suspect my cold meds are responsible for, I've also began to wonder about some other parts of our interactions.
Why is it that these guys thought to seek me out in a group scenario, to greet me with a smile, to ask how I am and what I'm doing and how things are going and to comment on my still-casted arm? What said to them that it would be a good idea to be civil, nay friendly, to me? Was it my cold "you hurt my friend" glare? My obviously sarcastic, short and terse responses? The way I started to back away when one of them moved in for a hug? Was it that??
Or...was it because they thought that perhaps, beyond the connection of the girl they used to date and ultimately hurt, perhaps we had some sort of relationship, connection, friendship? This is where those old pictures come into play. I've been doing a lot of creeping on Fbook as of late: not in the trying-to-find-a-man sense or anything like that, but just looking at photos from a year or years ago, albums my friends have posted or have tagged me in. They bring back some of the happiest, funniest memories, with captions that trigger a hilarious reaction to a long-forgotten scene in our friendship. They bring back the: "Remember the time?" and "How about when we?". They spark the random quotes that are thrown into conversation, inside joeks that make us laugh until our stomachs hurt. These pictures have been inordinately successful in helping me waste time while I am continually broken.
And in some of those pictures are these very douchey exes that I've had the pleasure of running into over the last little while. And some of the funniest moments include them, and some of the funny things were said by them, and some of the funniest faces I've ever made were because of them.
So I'm left to wonder: what exactly do I do in these scenarios? Most of me wants to yell at them and tell them they're crazy and various other expletives; a quarter of me wants to remember that they're only human too, and the remaining fourth realizes that there are good memories tired to and shared with this person. What's a girl to do?
Simply: the only thing she can. Grin and bare it through the awkwardness; show disapproval for their shitty choices in expression and intonation; and then haul ass as far away and as fast as one can, texting the girls all the while: "omg, guess who I just saw".
I'm learning to forgive, but not forget: you're only human, you make mistakes, and everyone, in one way or another, deserve a second chance. That's my forgive, and I'm working on it.
But I won't forget: not the shitty things they've chosen, but also not the hilarious, happy moments we shared somewhere along this road called life.
Forgive, but don't forget. Today's moral from the broken one.