Do you ever wonder what happened to people? And that’s when you take a peek on social media to see where they’ve been for all the intervening years? Mind you, I’m not talking about people you were necessarily close to, just people that were sort of in your world or circled your orbit as it were. Sometimes they were just people you sort of saw in the background.
I have done that a few times recently and it’s so odd to look at some of these people you knew once as kids now as adults, often with their own kids. Time has flown, yet the strangest thing I’ve noticed in some of these cases is how little some of these people have changed. They’ve aged, so have I, but it’s like time stood still even if the aging clock didn’t . There they are, in poses similar to what their younger selves used to do and in similar situations. It is like Alice looking down the rabbit hole.
And then there are the people that you run into in real time. My favorite have been people that just used to know my parents and in some cases are the kids of the people who used to know my parents. Most of the time, it’s really nice to run into these people as we shared some fun memories, but some are not so pleasant.
Sometimes you run into people whose parents used to be friends with your parents but are no longer friends with your parents. You see these people and you say “hello” to because that’s the polite thing to do when you run into someone, especially when you’re about 3 feet or less from them. And these are also the kind of people who pretend they don’t see you, don’t hear you, or just turn their backs. What is the point of being rude? Yet they do it. Haven’t run into some of these people in a long time except for occasional near misses on social media on other friends’ Facebook pages. Which is terrific. Who needs that pettiness and negativity?
But looking down the rabbit hole can be painful. You see people you were once close to as well as the people who were just sort of peripheral or on the fringe of your life. People change as they get older, and commonality fades. People just let go of one and other.
Sometimes you see people who were once a very large part of your life…..until they weren’t. Sometimes seeing those people is ok, and sometimes it’s not. Because some people just hurt you when they leave. Period. Sometimes these people know they have done that, but often times they don’t because they are not thinking about anything other than their own path.
I guess that is one of the blessings of growing up and even getting older: you can choose who you wish to spend your time with. And that is such a nice thing. Occasionally looking down the rabbit hole for me reinforces I am glad I am where I am in my life and who I am with. Love and respect are very powerful things.
I have been working on this piece of writing for a while and put it away. Then I came back to it. I did not want to sound negative writing it because I wasn’t feeling negative.
But then I was. It’s like I was a kid again with all those raw feelings you can feel at those young ages.
Sometimes it is just hard to have grace when you unexpectedly find yourself face to social media face with someone who hurt you deeply. But then you realize they aren’t the people really once were. And while it still hurts in a sense, in a sense you can let it go. You have nice memories, but you are both off on different journeys.
Trust me, grace and forgiveness take work, but if you don’t release it it’s simply unhealthy. Why let it fester? After all, these people you see in your rear view mirror ? They aren’t worrying about you are they?
I know some will read this post and wonder if I am speaking about them in particular. Those are the people who will never get it, and I can’t control what they think (or feel). This is just one of those things I have thought about and have actually discussed with other friends who have also thought about and/or experienced this.