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April 24, 2021

Just Call Them—Don’t Harden your Heart.

 

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Sometimes we don’t talk to our friends for a while.

I have a friend like that.

We’d talk out our problems and support each other, but I started to notice that I always initiated the call. So, I decided to hold back and wait for him to call me.

Crickets.

Over time that created a small crack in my heart.

Was I not important enough? Were we only friends when it’s convenient for him?

Then COVID-19 hit, and by 2021 my city was in our second lockdown of the year. It was hard, but I kept imagining a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel. I soldiered on.

When some of the restrictions were lifted, we could sit in the café area of our local grocery store. I felt like a kid at Christmas and immediately arranged for coffee with my close girlfriend.

Making our order with masks on, signing the contact sheet at the café felt like a small price to pay for social connection, especially if we live alone.

Within five days, my little piece of heaven was closed for our third lockdown. I remember walking into the store for groceries and feeling disappointed in everyone’s spirit, mine included. I forced myself to remember that there were millions of people in dire circumstances. I began the comparison of “the man with no shoes.”

Tears puddled as I thought of my close family member as he valiantly fights for his life against cancer and how his unexpected and excruciating pain suddenly shadowed his light.

I remembered the fragility of life.

We often hear words like, “Life happens” and, “Be grateful.” I think most of us are grateful in general, but there are times we need reminding. This lack of communication with my friend was one of mine.

When we angrily defend our position to not call thinking,

“It’s not fair. I’m always the one reaching out!”

…we end up hurting ourselves.

My friend was always there for me. Renewing our connection was not only for my friend’s sake but for mine as well.

The way we take our power back would be to not let the burden of those “not fair” thoughts drain our energy.

Let go of the idea around “fairness” and enjoy the conversations when we have them and leave it at that. Freeing ourselves from expectations of how it should be, we began to shift from pride to releasing the stuck energy that gobbles up our precious time.

This isn’t a conversation about toxic relationships or women’s empowerment—it’s about recognizing humanity’s frailties and not letting them darken our hearts. Our hearts need all the love they can muster to get through these harsh Covid restrictions. Giving our hearts more space to be filled with love to help carry us through Covid and reach out to that person we’ve been avoiding. This replenishes wasted angry energy with more room for self-compassion, love, and understanding. If we find that too hard at the moment, then start by letting go of the expectations of how it should have been.

If we’re letting pride interfere with our true nature of love and compassion that prevents us from reaching out,

Here’s what we can do:

>> Hold the intention that the call we’re about to make is more for us—and for them—because it is. We’re moving past our ego and into our true selves. That’s where we find peace.

>> Think how it would feel if that person were no longer here, and we were left with that crack on our heart because we didn’t apply the balm of keeping in touch because of pride. Cracks almost always create deeper chasms, and with today’s stressful environment, they can end up in heartbreak and regret.

>> While chatting, if it starts to feel we’re falling back into those old ideas of who called whom, remind ourselves that we’re doing this for our healing. Even if we continue to make the calls first, do so when the love is reciprocated.

>> When the conversation is over, express gratitude to yourself for having the courage to heal that small part of your heart and knowing that reaching out wasn’t a sign of weakness. It was a sign of forgiveness and power—giving more energy to deal with life’s current complexities around Covid.

Most of us are struggling even more so lately. It doesn’t always help to hear that, but one way to feel better is to release energy that no longer serves us. Mine was to get rid of the idea that he had to text me first.

Let go of the negative what-ifs.

What if I test my friend to see if he’ll call first and then feel disappointed when he doesn’t?

We need to try and stop making up stories of it being related to our worth as a friend. Our value isn’t calculated on who calls whom. We’re worthy because we are who we are. Period.

I’ll go back to being the one initiating the call if I continue to enjoy the conversations. That is what returns me to my soul, and my soul knows where to lead me.

 

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