Dear Old Friend,

Remember the heart shaped Valentine’s letter you wrote to me? It has been on the front of my binder ever since you gave it to me–exactly a year ago.

“Dear Michelle,

You really are the sweetest person I’ve ever met. Whenever I’m around you, I just get this calming and happy aura and I’m pretty sure everyone does too. You’re so generous and thoughtful and I’m so happy that I met you this year! One day, you’ll make a difference in this world by spreading your kindness and I think that you’ve already done that enough just by being around people at school. I hope we become closer because you’re as sweet as a cupcake. Happy Valentine’s Day! Love ya!”

When I first read it, I remember how much your kind words encouraged me to keep on being the best person I can be. But eventually, I made a mistake and although the mistake did not affect you, your perspective on me took a 180 degree turn.

You talked to him (I’m sure you know who I’m referring to) and you helped fuel the hatred in him. I understand you wanted to support him and make him feel better but it resulted in dramatizing everything. Why? Why didn’t you ever talk to me about it? I know from the outside it seemed like I did everything intentionally but I wish you could have given me a chance to talk.

Instead, you talked to me like normal, covering up how you truly felt. You gave me compliments, you treated me like I was still a friend, but I could sense the forcefulness in your eyes as you smiled and greeted me for the sake of being polite. In fact, my invitation to your party was forced upon by your mom. Wow I apologize. I should have known and declined…But nevertheless, I still continued treating you normally and I never wanted to give you any hostility despite that I was deeply bothered you discussed me to other people but never brought anything up with me.

The first time that I came to you to talk, I poured out everything to you and I thought you understood me. Unfortunately, you had already hated me too much to consider my side of the story. You replied with, “I was appalled…” I know my actions made it seem like was truly careless and inconsiderate. I understand you cared about him but I was your friend too. It saddened me that you were so quick to shift judgments and choose sides.

Then over time, we started to drift away. You no longer wanted to talk to me and I found no purpose in trying to pursue our feigned friendship.

In your eyes, I put up a facade to manipulate people. I don’t know where you came up with this or why and I would like to know when was one occurrence where I used someone to my own advantage? When did I ever use him? For what reason? Honestly I would never ever have any intentions to. He was my best friend and I cared about him.

I know I have made mistakes and I accept full responsibility for them. If you don’t respect me because of the decisions I made, then that’s your choice. It’s not my place to want to gain your acceptance in the things I do. I don’t take pride in my mistakes but I am thankful for them because they opened my eyes to so many new things. I became more aware of the unpleasantness in life and I realized who were my true friends. They were the ones who gave me their full support and told me it’s ok to make mistakes.

In all honesty, I have learned more from my mistakes than I ever would from being free of wrongdoings. I actually do not regret anything. Sure it sucks that my mistakes became public, resulting in the loss of so many friendships. But I have accepted the fact that nothing can take away the compassion and love I have to share with this world. Being raised in a family who strongly believes in-and practices-Buddhist teachings, I have set my own morals and values. They are not at all similar to what you currently think of me. I know I have a lifetime of mistakes ahead of me, therefore, I will keep in mind to never be ashamed and to always learn from them because each mistake helps me become a better person. I hope you too would realize being a perfectionist still have its flaws..

Lately I’ve been wishing we had taken care of things differently. We could have preserved our friendship. But I’m not sure if that’s what you would want. I wasn’t pure or good enough to be your friend. You let my mistakes cloud your judgments and that took a toll on so many things. I thought you knew me better…I came to realize though, you only saw the black and the white. You never looked to all of the grey that was in between. I feel like there’s so many empty holes between us and I would be glad to talk to you to set things straight. For now, I have let everything out and although so much have changed to ever be the same, I hope someday we can pick up where we left off.



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