Nov 25, 2012

Friends that Go Missing In Action

Lau is MIA. No, she's no a penpal of mine, she's a friend from University, and who works at the bank where I used to work before I moved to my current company. The reason for Lau to be missing is that she's studying for an MSc. at the most pretigious university of Costa Rica, the UCR. That MSc. is really hard to get and it truly demands a lot of effort and sacrifice from the students, which is good, because that way they make sure to keep their good name untarnished from the wave of smuck that sticks to most of the Master Degrees you can get in this country, which are widely known for being aimed only to collect money from people, but imparting no knowledge at all.

This Masters will take around two years, and it's a non-stop type of program, that demands at least three days a week for classes, and the rest for preparing for said classes. Before Lau got into it she told us that she was going to drop off the map and have no life. Having been her classmate in our university, I know the level of commitment she has to everything she puts her heart into, so this was all expected. That doesn't mean that I don't miss her - goodness, I do! - and so from time to time we make a feeble attempt at reaching out for her. Feeble as in "shy" because we don't want to disturb her.

Friends from all spheres of our live drop off the map from time to time due to different reasons. Some get sick, say have a bad case of blues, or have to take care of someone, say a baby or a sick relative, or someone with special needs, or they start a new project in their lives that eat up all their time, like they start a big home renovation, or get a new job or a promotion that demands them to be on top of everything or pack them with thrice as much work as before, or start studying, or get into a reseach project... you name it, they all take up a large part of their time, and whether they chose it or not, could or couldn't take time to be with you, it's not something you can decide for them. Recriminations have no place in here, if you are real friends. Just because you would reach out immediately for your friends for support, it doesn't mean that everybody - even your friends - would act the same way.

Do you love them? Then care for them and respect their time out. Yes, sure, send them little snipets of color - a card, a message, a picture - but don't be intrusive. Let them reach out when they can, after all, it's not you who are in whatever they are, so you don't know what's like for them. Then, when they will emerge from the depths of whatever holds their undivided attention, I bet they'll have plenty of things to tell to all their friends, plenty of gifts of words, stories to tell to share with all.

Be a good friend. Respect.

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