If I am going to take away one thing post break-up it is my ability to be a Zen Master. I have been trying really really hard to remain cool and calm and collected.
People have behaved disappointingly since the break-up. There are people who have not got in touch with me at all about it and people who have decided that Facebook is an appropriate medium for friendship in times like these. Some of these people have not surprised me in the slightest, others have left me gobsmacked, all have required me to re-assess how I view some of my friendships.
And thus the Zen Master was born.
I realised I had a couple of choices. I could have it out with those friends – call them out on their appalling behaviour and let them know how disappointed I was in them. I could stop speaking to them altogether. Or I could just let it go.
I can now accept that those people who have been there for me are really the only ones that matter. I know who those people are, I hope they know who they are, they are the one who were relentless in their checking up on me, who constantly asked me what I needed help with, who always listened with judgement. Why would I waste time on anyone else? Why should I invest my time and energy on those who clearly do not value my friendship?
The old Girl would have held this grudge deep inside and let it fester like a rotting, maggoty piece of meat. The old Girl would have cut those friends off, deleted them from Facebook and just never spoken to them again. Or she would have been snippy and rude to them when she did see them, letting them know that she was annoyed but being unwilling to tell them why.
I really really hate confrontation and arguments. I get flustered and I cry. I don’t have to be sad, but I will cry anyway. Whatever emotion I have, it will come leaking out of my eyes and trickling down my cheeks and I am incapable of stopping it.
So I have learned to just let it go. Yes, they have been disappointing. Yes, they are crappy friends. No, I won’t be making any great effort to meet up or stay in touch. But will they remain my friends? Yes, they will. They might not be close friends anymore but they will still be friends. I have looked at my relationships with them and thought very hard about whether I still want them in my life. On reflection, yes I do still want them in my life, I’m not one to throw away years of friendship over something like this, especially when I know that I do have good friends on my side.
Maybe that’s what makes it easier to let it go. I know that I have several very good friends that I can rely on (not to mention a family) and have realised that that is all I need. That allows me to not get stressed out and annoyed at these other people – why get stressed out about someone not being there for you when you’ve already been glued back together by others?
The Zen Master act has been quite liberating. I am able to stand back and really look at things and ask myself, “Is this something worth getting stressed and worried and frantic and upset about?” The answer has invariably been, “No.”
I have not perfected the Zen Master art yet and there have been several wobbles along the way but it’s allowed me to focus on more important things, and people, in the past month or so.
It’s also an art that came in incredibly handy when I discovered that Hull City Council had taken £104 worth of council tax out of my account for a property I haven’t lived in since the middle of June and was informed it will be at least 3 weeks until I can hope to see it again.
And if the Zen Master routine fails I have an always patient, reasonable and indefatigable ear to chew off and a pillow to pummel.