I found out today that an old friend of mine from my San Diego days recently passed away from bacterial meningitis. He was 33.
Each death or loss I suffer reminds me of the following poem:
Reason, Season, or Lifetime
People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.
When you figure out which one it is,
you will know what to do for each person.
When someone is in your life for a REASON,
it is usually to meet a need you have expressed.
They have come to assist you through a difficulty;
to provide you with guidance and support;
to aid you physically, emotionally or spiritually.
They may seem like a godsend, and they are.
They are there for the reason you need them to be.
Then, without any wrongdoing on your part or at an inconvenient time,
this person will say or do something to bring the relationship to an end.
Sometimes they die. Sometimes they walk away.
Sometimes they act up and force you to take a stand.
What we must realize is that our need has been met, our desire fulfilled; their work is done.
The prayer you sent up has been answered and now it is time to move on.
Some people come into your life for a SEASON,
because your turn has come to share, grow or learn.
They bring you an experience of peace or make you laugh.
They may teach you something you have never done.
They usually give you an unbelievable amount of joy.
Believe it. It is real. But only for a season.
LIFETIME relationships teach you lifetime lessons;
things you must build upon in order to have a solid emotional foundation.
Your job is to accept the lesson, love the person,
and put what you have learned to use in all other relationships and areas of your life.
It is said that love is blind but friendship is clairvoyant.
I look back on my life and feel incredibly grateful for all the people I’ve met along the way. I still find it challenging to accept that some of those people are gone, whether it was because they were only supposed to be a “season” or a “reason” or because they’ve passed to the other side.
The “season/reason” friends have always been hard for me to let go. When I got married, I had to cut the apron strings of my past. I had always stayed friends with my ex’s, and I didn’t understand why I couldn’t maintain those friendships. When I finally understood how those continued relationships bothered my husband, I immediately cut all contact. I mourned those relationships as I would a death. Two years later, I have a healthy marriage that is an open book. We have each other’s passwords. We share a Facebook page. There are no secrets.
I recently read a statistic that 1 in every 5 marriages ends in divorce due to Facebook. How sad is that? I’m a newlywed, so I still have stars in my eyes. I’m pretty realistic, though, and I know that marriage takes work. I know my marriage will inevitably face its own share of trials and tribulations. That’s why I cut those apron strings. I don’t ever want there to be the slightest bit of temptation. What I thought would be a “lifetime” friend had to be relegated to “season” status.
I thank the “season” friends for all the good times. I thank the “reason” friends for all the answered prayers. I thank the “lifetime” friends for being there through thick and thin and for the lifetime lessons we’ll continue to learn together.