Sunday, February 22, 2009

She's an owner of a small boutique here in town and I was her patron... looking for a small special something, maybe a ring, for a dear girlfriend.
The shop keeper had large cat-like eyes that danced with laughter but sat with a thatched roof of deeply rooted frown lines.
I'm not really sure how it all happened, but one thing led to another & before I knew it, I knew the shop owner's story of life, love & loss...
We all have our stories, some more tragic than others. Although I would never say this to her because I know it is all relative, her's was none too unusual but something about it captivated me just the same ...
Husband of seventeen years fooling around with the receptionist ...
Busted by a paper trail of receipts to florists and day-spas, Japanese restaurants and Victoria Secrets.
I smiled & nodded, remembering how I found paper trails myself many moons ago.
She packed all of his stuff, tossed it in the yard, hired a pitbull of an attorney, took him to the cleaners and opened her little boutique.
I laughed...'Ok. Good for you! You're happy now, right?'
Ut-Oh.
I watched her furrows deepen.
She told me about her best friend. Her girlfriend since high school. And their final falling out...when she 'wiped her hands clean' of her.
Apparently this girlfriend always had a hard time recalling birthdays & even if she did, she wasn't big on making a to-do over them.
Post-divorce, this proved to be fatal to their friendship.
The shopkeeper was so very devastated by her girlfriends lack of thoughtfulness that she completely wrote her off.
When the friend called the Saturday after her birthday to wish her a happy day, she hung up on her...and hadn't accepted her calls since.
Doing the math, I figured at 42 this woman had been a dear friend for 25 or more years.
My jaw hit the floor.
One of my own best friends has been of my world for about this long and she too, imho, is sensitive about birthdays and such... but I cannot imagine her ever completely wiping her hands clean of me should I forget to acknowledge her birthday on the precise day.
She's my friend...one of my best friends. She knows me.
She knows I am not good with keeping up with the time of the day, the date of the month & the day of the week. She knows that I love & adore her everyday...even if we don't speak everyday
I couldn't help but share my take on life, love & friendship with the shopkeeper.
That was over a year ago.
Anytime, I go into her shop, she smiles big & hugs me and I usually leave with some little gift.

But I saw her out the other night, in faxt, the same day I last visited her shop... out of her element, out of her shop.
She was walking into a store as I was walking out and I saw her before she saw me.
I smiled big & when she matched eyes with me... her furrow didn't break.
She looked right at me...at me smiling, and kept on frowning and then looked through me.
It was obvious she didn't recognize me outside of her shop, which is ok.

What struck me as tragically sad was that she wasn't open, much less reciprocating, to my smile and I knew...
it wasn't just me, it was everyone...anyone.

And my heart broke for her.
I knew at that moment that when she had thrown her husbands clothes in the yard, she kept all the negative stuff inside and when she had wiped her hands clean of her friend, she had closed such an important door to life...

May we all be open to smiling..

8 comments:

Wreggie said...

Great post. I have lost great friends over the years, we drifted apart and one had a falling out. Either way it was painful.

One came back a few years ago and asked for a new start. We are great friends again.

That husband is a dirty rat.

Mel said...

*sigh*

Life is JUST too freaking short, yaknow?

Choose carefully what you embrace.

((((((((((( SLB ))))))))))))))

karma lennon said...

Oh this makes me so sad. :( I'm glad that we are lucky enough to know, to always remember smiles and laughter.

skinnylittlesister said...

Wreggie...I guess I think that it's sad to see a lose/lose situation like this. And unfortunately, imho, she continues to lose...

It makes me think of something my sister once said...
'you gotta be free to have peace,
and you gotta have peace to know love,
and you gotta know love if you really want to live...' ...or something close to that.
I guess I see her bitterness as a lack of freedom...

Mel...Amen! So often so many of us (me included) spend so much time grasping onto what we know we have...such as pain or resentment, as opposed to being open to letting go of that and embracing something good...even if that something good is as simple as blind-faith...or a stranger.

Karma...:) They are contagious. I went tonight to an event where some folks were very stiff and serious, but I found that almost everyone was ready to ease up a bit when greeted with smiles and laughter. It's just so basic. Much Love, My Girl!

The CEO said...

I love the way you teach how to live. I have learned so much about living and loving from you, and I am so grateful for it. Thank you so much. I need not repeat the lessons, why harbor hate when it is so pervasive? It's so much better to laugh and love.
Peace and Love,
Monty

skinnylittlesister said...

Monty...It is much better to laugh and love and sometimes it is that which sees us through ruins. I have two people from my youth going through the dreaded D right now & find myself repeating these words...'It doesn't have to be lose/lose.' When I saw this woman & reflected on what happened I knew. When we deprive and punish others, we do the same, perhaps amplified, to ourselves. Much Love Monty.

singleton said...

ILYSVVM....
And know this story well...

How blessed I am to have thrown all my husbands belongings out in the yard...

And with time, turn around and embrace that very moment...
as the open caged door....

And love him even more for setting me free....

For the life of me...
I don't know why people deny themselves the very simple pleasure of the love of peace...

skinnylittlesister said...

Yep sister...I believe you said it well.
we gotta be free
ILYSVFM