Fear of Loss

Apr 26, 2013 by

“. . . attachments and desires diminish pleasure, because you can’t fully enjoy something that you fear losing.”

– Swami, The Lost Girls


          Last night, for the first time in nearly a month, I slept at home. I couldn’t bring myself to sleep in my bed for fear that I would never get out of it, so I slept on the couch. (I’ve previously spent whole weekends in that bed. It gives me anxiety just to look at it.) Despite constant internal panic while in the apartment, I got through the night. I was frustratingly sad the entire time that I was there (which wasn’t long, since I went to the gym after work, then to the mall and out to eat at a new downtown restaurant with Olivia). I hate admitting that. I’ve missed Olivia so much. I hate that I’m uncomfortable in our home, but it doesn’t feel like home anymore. It’s just a place I pay to sleep at (or, lately, not sleep at).

          I feel a huge emotional disconnect between Olivia and I. I’m not sure if she feels it too. She’s not a talker. Maybe she wants to close the gap too. Maybe she doesn’t know how to bring it up. Maybe I’m simply alone in the feeling of missing my best friend. I’ll have to wonder in silence. I don’t want to come off as clingy and dependent.

          Of course, I’m also scared of the damage ignoring the distance can do, but verbalizing my concerns seems to have potentially greater consequences. Talking about my insecurities about our friendship usually results in her getting defensive of her space, and telling me that I don’t give her enough of it. I don’t need to hear that. The irritation in her voice as she asks for more and more space after I’ve been out of the apartment for a month hurts. I hope to have the will power to remain silent for once. My words have done enough. I don’t want to use them anymore.

          To be honest, I’m terrified to talk to her about anything, especially anything of importance. It sucks. I’m not sure how to rebuild a friendship without genuine communication. I piggyback off what she has to say as much as I can. When she talks about work or the musical she recently performed in, I soak up every word in case it’s the last one I get. I use what she gives me to fuel more conversation.

          However, initiating conversation is frightening. I can’t speak about anything other than how I’m still scraping frost off of my car windows at the end of April or how I’m reading about *insert random, insignificant topic here* or how Book of Mormon tickets are so overpriced that they cost a trip to Vegas. I’m small talking my best friend. Most of the time, I’m not talking at all. I don’t know what to say. I don’t know how to talk to her about my life. I don’t even know if she wants to know about my life. In the last six weeks, she’s asked two questions about me. In all fairness to her, I don’t have much of a life, so she could be assuming that there’s nothing to tell. I guess there isn’t much, but I miss being asked about something as small as my day. Either way, I try not to talk about me unless asked.

          I’m walking on eggshells that I hear cracking beneath my feet. I feel like I can’t show happiness or excitement around her. She’s not used to seeing me happy. She may think it’s fake. I obviously can’t show sadness or weakness in her presence either. That’s what drove her away. I’m in a state of limbo in my own apartment, somewhere between happy and sad that’s mostly nothingness, which shows itself in silence, probably looking a lot like sadness, but is thankfully less flashy than tears. I feel alone.

          Worse, I feel like I’m back. After a month of looking inward, I feel like I’ve lost myself again in a single night. I have a new mask. I put it on for my best friend. I put it on because I’m scared of my best friend. This morning, for the first time in a month, I dropped Olivia off at work on my way to the office. As soon as I turned left out of the parking lot, I burst into unstoppable tears, feeling a sense of relief as I pulled the off my uncomfortable mask and molded back into my own skin.

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