"There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens"
I have completely given up on trying to understand life. Honestly. Sometimes it just doesn't make sense. But this Bible passage... for some reason it has really struck a nerve with me. I've been thinking this week about people, places, and things that were in my life at some point, but now are not.
For example, since losing Jack, I have completely stopped communicating with a few people that I once considered good friends. I have no idea why it happened, it just... did. I was in such a horrible place back in September, but there were some amazing people who helped me crawl out of my intense grief. And then there were others who tried once or twice to contact me, and when I didn't respond back quickly with my usual upbeat enthusiasm they just... abandoned me. I wasn't ready to speak right away, but I was ready eventually. I was waiting... and nothing. Instead, they gave up on trying to reach out to me or just ignored me altogether.
At that time, I was in a place where I couldn't be strong. I needed my friends to be strong for me - I couldn't make the first, second, or even third move toward normalcy... I needed them to do it. When they didn't, it made me feel as though I was only useful to those people before my world was shattered, and once it was, I no longer had a place in their happy and uncomplicated lives. It made me feel as though our friendship was superficial, when I had always thought it was real.
My wise friend Brendan told me he truly believes that at any given point, people are in your lives for a particular reason. Not every person you meet is supposed to be your best friend forever. Some people serve a purpose for a small portion of your life, and you'll never forget them. But they are only a portion of one or two chapters in the book of your life, and even if that character was really interesting and fun, they aren't as integral to the story as others. In my mind, what's done is done. That chapter is over.
The Audra that I see today is a completely different person than the Audra I was at this time last year. I am SO lucky to have people in my life today who have embraced both versions. I wish I could still be that naive girl from back then.... but I'm not. Way too much has changed, and it's impossible to go back. I will never be the same, and I know that. But I have a whole lot of people who love me anyway, and those characters are sticking around for a long, long time.