My absolute best guy friend at work is taking a new job. In other words, we won’t be able to talk all the time, quote StepBrothers or share all the goings on of our daily non-work lives. I’m surprised by just how much this is upsetting me. My friend (I will call him Doc) and I hit it off immediately. Our friendship began by us reciting, word-for-word, the “did we just become best friends?” sequence from StepBrothers. We’ve grown closer since then, talking about everything from the military (Doc is in the Navy) to gross hospital humor to my bipolar disorder. I can’t help but smile as soon as I see Doc and there were plenty of rumors going around about our friendship. Doc is ridiculously attractive, but I can honestly say I’m not attracted to him in that sense. He is a kindred soul to me, someone I feel incredibly comfortable with. Doc can tell when I’m not feeling right, bipolar-wise and effortlessly calms me down or lifts me up, depending on what I’m feeling. He mentioned a few weeks back that he was looking into getting a different job. I can understand why he wants to go, he works long hours for less than stellar pay. As much as I want my friends to succeed in their endeavors, that selfish part of me that loves having him there stewed. Doc advised me today he got a great job he interviewed for and while I’m thrilled for him, I keep hearing Morgan Freeman in my head, saying this line from the movie The Shawshank Redemption :”Some birds aren’t meant to be caged. Their feathers are just too bright. And when they fly away, the part of you that knows it was a sin to lock them up does rejoice. But still, the place you live in is that much more drab and empty that they’re gone. I guess I just miss my friend”.
As I was thinking about just why Doc’s eminent departure is so upsetting to me, I keep thinking about how some people come into our lives, make an impact and leave while other people never leave. With my emotional history, I’ve made and lost many friends. I recognize that some people just aren’t meant to stay in my life. God gives us people in our lives to be a blessing or a lesson, and when someone is no longer a part of my life, I try to figure out what lesson God wants me to learn from having had that person in my life. I also wonder if they miss me as much as I miss them, if I made as much of an impact on their lives as they did mine. We are never really whole after a relationship or friendship ends, I think we leave little pieces of ourselves with them and we take pieces of them with us. Doc is most certainly a blessing to me, encouraging me to see myself as capable, smart and strong.
I’m truly going to miss Doc and I know it will take a lot of strength to not cry on his last day at the hospital. I’ll miss feeling still and calm while sitting next to him, our ridiculous and juvenile inside jokes, the way we work together seamlessly on a trauma, his professionalism tempered with such compassion. But the thing I will miss the most is his complete acceptance of me, warts and all. There are so many more things I could say about what a great person and friend he is, but his own words speak volumes. I told him about my having bipolar (something I haven’t shared with too many people I work with) and this was what he said:” I can tell when you’re down. You don’t shine as bright then. But I will say that even when you’re down, you are a wonderful friend to me.”
Love ya, Doc.