There I sat in a cramped hotel room with my family, sobbing uncontrollably for what felt like an hour. The flood of emotion came tumbling down on me unannounced. I was humiliated, having hardly ever cried in front of anyone before. But considering the circumstances, I should have been more prepared.
Earlier that afternoon, we arrived after a seven-hour trip through mountains and cornfields to the university where my brother would be living for the next four years. What killed me was leaving him there. Knowing I’d ride back the next day without him. Wondering if he’d be the same when he returned.
Two months passed. I sat in my own bed, sobbing not quite uncontrollably, but certainly unexpectedly. We had kept in touch and texted at least a few times each week. He seemed like the same guy still, from what I could tell by his messages. I was fine with the way things were, having adjusted to life without him. And then the car pulled into the driveway.
There he was, a real live person. The person that for the past year up until two months ago had been my best friend. The person that had understood me in ways only he could. The person that I could be around without fear. And though he looked the same, despite the need for a haircut, something was different.
This wasn’t the brother I remembered. From the minute I saw him, I felt awkward and insignificant. When he kept interrupting me, never giving me a chance to speak, I thought surely he didn’t care about me anymore.
Now I felt around him the same way I felt around any other person in the cold world–distant, inferior, unnoticed.
But it wasn’t him that had changed; no, he was the same as he always was, despite the difference in how I felt. I hadn’t changed either, though. That left one option: It was the relationship that had changed. And perhaps that’s what led to the ugly tears…on both the night I left him and the night I saw him again.
I wanted my best friend to stay my best friend. Those days of riding to orchestra practice together, stopping by Starbucks, getting lunch afterwards… I didn’t want them to go. But they had to.
Because like many people in life, my brother had to leave me.
Whether it was a close sibling moving out, a friend growing distant, or even the death of a loved one, we’ve all faced moments of having to come to terms with the reality of changing relationships. The pain can be inexpressible when we watch the close bonds of a friendship disintegrate before our eyes.
Dealing with the aftermath of the change can be painful, depressing. It may cause us to question our worth, our value, our loved-ness. It takes time to reflect, to hurt, and to finally move on. It’s okay to mourn what once was and has ceased to be. But don’t make the mistake of mourning alone.
In that night when you’re crying relentlessly, God is there with you.
You may not feel him holding you gently in his mighty arms, but you better believe God loves you, his precious child. He sees those tears, and He cares. Jesus knows the pain and heartache of betrayal (remember Judas?), the death of a friend (remember Lazarus?), and being deserted by his closest companions (Garden of Gethsemane ring a bell?). He understands your pain.
He is our Great High Priest who was made like us in every respect and sympathizes with us in our weakness (Hebrews 2:17, 4:15). He is both the Lamb that was led to the slaughter for our sake (Isaiah 53:7) and the Great Shepherd who holds us in his hand so that no one can snatch us away (John 10:28). Nothing, nothing, can separate us from his love.
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:37-39)
Children of God, we need not fear. We are safe and secure in our Father’s hands. And nothing can snatch us away.
Wow, Olivia! Thank you for sharing from your heart. I tend to worry about how my relationships with friends and family will change after I graduate. This article was very calming. Thanks for sharing!
I definitely have lost friendships, so this article was very encouraging! Thank you for sharing your story!
I love this article Olivia! I felt almost like you wrote this for me :’-)
Olivia, your articles are always so good! I needed the reminder that God never ever changes and He’s “the anchor for our souls”. 🙂 Thanks for sharing!
Good post. Rather accurate . It is better to rely on Jesus than people cause people can make you ; ( . As a people person that has issues developing good friendships just for them to fall apart I can relate. God can give us the strength to carry on the question is will we? We all suffer. Romans 8:18. i’ve been slowly realizing this myself. God has much in store for us. God Bless : ))))
Well thank you . It gets better with time . Whatever you or others are dealing with. My blog is timeislove200.blogspot.com and is me in a nutshell. And I can’t help but wonder if God allowed her to go away for awhile so I could focus more on Him and my life thus get back into control. I was making some bad choices that she accepted as ok and those were things I struggle with. She may be different when she comes back BUT ya never know if that can be good or bad. I’m thinking on spending more time with a certain Christian girl who has been trying to use God’s word to help me since I told her about the problem .
Sure. I loved the girl who had to leave in a way because she was the first girl who took the time to listen to me….. sadly she was not Christian . I can’t say my problem cause it’s a secret in a way. All I can say is it is hard. And oh, I edited my profile a bit after you mentioned it. I recantly turned 20 and had forgot to update my disuqis profile
still looking for them……
Ya…. I have some siblings . One is adopted , the other one is actually the publisher of this article .
Ya….. and having not too many friends ain’t uncommon 🙂 believe me, it is a BIG blessing once you reach college and everything changes .
I hope I did not make you : (
and btw.. did your brother start making bad choices that partially resulted in his deciding to stray from the Lord?
you changed your username ??? I’m doing fine. Yes I remember you. I’m in my room while one of my sisters is sick with the flu and the other is psychologically insane.
my sister ( the one that is NOT Livy.) has a insane amount of psychological and developmental issues and has also anger problems. Yes. Psychologically insane
you do blogging? if so, what do ya blog about?
I’m going to be doing a race very soon. As I post this, Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic by Genesis is on the radio station I’m listening to, 98.9 Simon FM.
5k ( easy!) tomorrow morning.
thanks. I just updated it a few days ago. Be free to follow it
ya I got them.
fine. This afternoon I had nothin to do sadly. : ( I’m thinking about doing one final run tonight before tomorrow
yes I’m a ok runner.
never too late! I’m running my first half marathon of the year on the 17th and excited
when I started out I was insanely bad
Got postponed for another day due to rain
Maine is a warm sunny place?
What stuff? Any specific content?
I’m thinking about doing a blog post on the outcome fall out of loss and how God can use it .
Powerful truths. And very calming.
This is a fabulous article, Olivia! So encouraging and beautifully written! You are a fabulous writer! This spoke to me…thank you so much for writing it!
That’s is a VERY hard way for a relationship to change : ( I’m really glad I never have gone thru that.
Great post, Olivia. Thank you for the reminder!
*reading article* Yup. Yup. Yup. *eyes tear up* yup…
Beautiful article, Olivia. So true!