It's a very difficult realization that someone important to you has changed. It's an even more difficult realization when that change is because of something you have done.
I'm not the person I was when I was in my early 20s. I'm not even close to that person. My life has gone through so many ups and downs, and spins and turns, and, well....it's just not the same.
There are very few people left in my life that were in my life at that time. Even the ones that were, I don't speak to very often. In my early 20s, I was a mother of four, married, and still trying to figure out what my mission in life was. I can honestly say, I still don't know what that mission was.
Somewhere in my mid-20s, my marriage was over, my friends started to stray away, I struggled even more to find myself. Bad decision after bad decision came next. I've since found myself living in a completely different state, hours away from family, and still struggling. But, I've got a job I love, though the pay sucks, and I struggle financially. I've since met so many new friends, whose relationships are stronger and more supportive than most all of those in my past, and I am just...happy. But there is still something missing. I don't feel complete. I don't feel like I've figured out what my life mission is yet. I have no idea why I am me.
So in reconnecting with people from my past, I've come to realize that I am not the only one who has changed. People in my life have changed. People my age are just now starting to settle into families (something I still long for) and have their "happily ever afters"(also something I still long for). And in these reconnections, I've realized that some of these changes are because of things I've done, directly or indirectly, to these people. And that hurts.
When you are young, you are told that your actions will effect others, and you listen to it, and you contemplate it, and then you forget it. And that is exactly what I did. And now I am seeing that this was true, and I should have listened, and I should have realized that I should have worked harder at these relationships, and I should not have taken for granted what was right in front of me, and I should have listened to my heart, not my head, and I should have....a lot of things that I didn't. And my heart aches. Because somewhere, not far from my past, is someone who is just a little bit colder, a little bit less likely to trust, and a little bit less likely to ever love, believe in, and adore someone...because of something I did to them...and I can never take back my own actions.
I hope that from this moment forward, when I am faced with a decision, I am a little better at remembering that my actions will indeed, have an impact on other people.