What happens when you lose touch with someone? Do they just stay gone? Do you reach out and try and reconnect? Well, I guess that depends on what they meant to you and if they’re worth it or not. At the end of the day nobody needs toxic people in their lives ... they’re just not good for you. If that person is disconnected from you because they were always taking and never giving, or maybe their conversations were one-sided; maybe they stole someone from you, like a husband or a wife. Well, that’s what you call a toxic individual and I’m sorry but those folks need to stay lost.
But what if you were friends with someone in college, and you genuinely liked that person but for one reason or another you fell out of touch, I don’t see the harm in trying to reach out and trying to reconnect. But the individual on the other end has to feel the same way, otherwise, as James Carville would say, "That dog don’t hunt." In those instances you gotta let it go and move on.
Sometimes folks just grow apart. I had a friend in college I considered a brother and on some level I still do. But our interests changed, our priorities changed and we slowly fell out of touch. That being said, I still see that guy from time to time and when we are together it’s like I saw him yesterday. But those are in controlled situations where the bar is low and the beer is flowing and we can revert back to our old college days.
With the way this year had started I’ve been thinking a lot about past friendships and even some relatives that I’ve fallen out of touch with. I’ve been in situations where the reconnection has been attempted and failed with no explanation and no justification. You can’t control that, so you have to go to a place where you can wrap your head around it and move on. It may tear at you for a few days, it may leave a small bruise on your soul, but when all is said and done there’s nothing you can do except forgive and forget.
If you remember a few columns back I talked about New Year’s resolutions and not needing a Jan. 1 start date. Well, I’m gonna put that into practice and I’m starting today. I’m gonna try to connect better with the folks that mean something to me.
Here’s a funny little secret you may not know about me: I’m kind of a lousy communicator. Yup, it’s true; if it weren’t for my wife I’d most likely be a hobbit. I don’t call enough people who are close to me. I know, I know, you’re thinking, "Let me get this straight ... the guy with his own radio program and a weekly column doesn’t communicate?" Well, when it comes to one-on-one communication, I’m not that good at it. So starting today, I’m gonna change that. After all, why take the chance that you’ll leave something unsaid?
With all that in mind I want to remind you of something my mother used to tell me all the time: "If you don’t have anything nice to say, then don’t say anything at all." So if you’re thinking you’re gonna find that old neighbor that borrowed your weed whacker and never returned and give him what for, don’t. If you do, you become that toxic person.
When I get to the end of the road, I don’t want any regrets. I want to have the peace of mind knowing that I spent my life doing and giving, not taking and receiving. So if you get a call from me, don’t be afraid to pick up the phone, I’m simply calling to say hello. Unless you’ve got my weed whacker! What the Hell is up with that?