(Note: If this post is a bit incomprehensible at first glance, the two links are to previous posts of mine that provide background information. My hope today, as always, is that this is the last time I will have to write on this theme.)
A while back, the “professor” tried to get through to me through a third party, a wonderful man who was moved enough by my sorrow to try to “broker a temporary detente” between us, as he put it. Through this third party (a mutual associate), the professor declared:
“I can have no contact with Andy whatsoever at this time.”
The wonderful man sort of made it sound as though at some later time, when things were different, perhaps he could have contact with me. So he told me: “We can try again later if you like.” I suggested we wait six months. Then, six months elapsed, and I asked the mutual friend to try again. But he declined, saying that the initial message he’d gotten from the professor was actually this:
“I can have no contact with Andy at this time –
and I will not have contact with him at any time.
It will not be wise of you to try again.”
At that, I felt more than a bit ashamed of myself for even commandeering the assistance of this wonderful man in the first place. He’s the only person I’ve encountered who agreed to try to get through to the professor on my behalf. I certainly didn’t want to pressure the fellow any further. I figure he either forgot what he had said the first time, because he really didn’t want to intervene a second time, or else he didn’t get it right in the first place. But that’s what happens when you can’t get it from the “horse’s mouth.”
So I was left with this frustrated feeling that this kind of message should be coming from the horse’s mouth! I can’t even imagine just blocking somebody on all these interfaces without explanation after having been friends for forty-five years! So the Sicilian in me – that is to say, 50% of me and no doubt the dominant genes – began to rear its head. I had been angry long enough, and I was about to get even. I began to devise ways to break through all the blocks that this professor has placed toward me on all his various interfaces. It became a special challenge for me – something that actually energized me. I would never let go! I would keep finding ways to buzz this professor until he breaks down completely.
Off to a good start, I noticed that my new cell phone somehow mandated me to use my given name rather than my common name, and more-or-less forced me to start a new G-Mail account based on my given name. So, all of a sudden the professor received two Facebook messages from a guy with my given name. The second simply included my phone number. I waited a while before assaying to send a third, more detailed and explanatory message. To that, Facebook responded:
This user is not receiving messages from you at this time.
This caused me to suspect that he had probably received my new phone number. “Aha!” I thought. “I shall text him, and see if my number is blocked.” Then I prayed. Vengeful though I might have been, I nonetheless prayed to the God whose right it is to take vengeance. But I prayed for reconciliation. Did forty-five years of friendship have to go down the tubes all because of this?
The reason for my repeated request is because I will be able to cease to contact you once I hear from you directly that you wish not to hear from me. Otherwise, my mind automatically keeps searching for the “magic words” that will somehow move you to acknowledge me and accept me as a friend once again. I realize this is my own stuff, but it’s basically not healthy for me to keep buzzing you like this, and I know myself well enough to know that a simple statement from you will suffice, as did with Jerry and John D. and others from LHS who have chosen not to have contact with me. I hope this is not too much to ask, and I certainly hope you are well.
Success! The message was not blocked!! But wait a minute – couldn’t he simply have changed his phone number??
Fed up, I prayed: “Lord, if he’s never going to talk to me again, and if that kind of thing is fine with him, can he at least do us both the courtesy of telling me so directly? You and I both know that if he simply lets me know, without confusion or mixed message, that he doesn’t want to hear from me until some such time as he chooses, I’ll be man enough to stop buzzing him. Or better yet, can’t we reconcile? Why is this forgiveness ball always in my court?”
It may seem strange, but after that I honestly did let go. For that moment, anyway – I let go completely. There are no magic words. There is nothing I can do in my power that will get this guy to talk to me again, either to tell me what it is that I did that caused him to suddenly diss me like this, or what it is that he did that makes him not want to face me. He more-or-less knows his part in the whole affair; he obviously has chosen to disrespect me and I have to get over it. I more-or-less know my own part in the whole affair; he has declined to “fill me in” with a more complete understanding, and I have to get over that too. It’s done. It’s over. I’m through. We’re through. I have to accept the hard fact that forty-five years of friendship were shot down the tubes for reasons I will never fully understand. Andy, that’s life. Andy, get over it. Andy —
Andy, take a valium? A friend listened to all of this and said:
I hate to break it to you,
but it’s more important to God that you forgive this guy
than that you finish your script.
Damn – I sure wish it were the other way around!