A group of us were sharing at our Bible study about losing friendships. People that were in our lives for a period of time just seem to move on. Sometimes they enrich our lives and sometimes they leave tears behind. When one is divorced, couples that you knew don’t know which side to take so they just pull away. Friends at church who spoke to you all the time, suddenly feel you are a threat to their husbands and back off. People you helped financially and emotionally, finally show their true colors as takers, and you have to sever the relationship. So many shared that after a death, whether a parent or another relative, that there is a battle royal for who gets what and the family is fractured. Things and possessions are more important than relationships. It is a sad thing when those you have loved, and thought loved you in return, turn away. My son-in-law had a cousin he spent much time with as a boy. He occupied himself building balsa airplanes, carefully fitting them together and painting them so they looked authentic. They hung by string from the ceiling of the bedroom he used. When the cousin died unexpectedly, before anyone else knew, a relative took a U-haul truck, cleared out the house and threw all the airplanes in the trash. My son-in-law would have gladly gone and retrieved them, or paid to ship them to him. He was devastated. Another friend, whose mother died, thought that she had been given the house, which her mother had paid for, saving her stepfather from foreclosure. She had to pay two stepsisters for their share of her mother’s house and it took almost everything she had saved. Another told about a cookie jar a friend’s mother kept full of cookies for her four kids when they were young. When the friend gave the cookie jar to one of her daughters, the other three were incensed! How do you split up a cookie jar?

When I was married the first time, we were used to 35 to 40 relatives at Thanksgiving and Christmas. Unfortunately, they were my husband’s family and after the divorce it was only my three children, my mother and me, quite an emotional adjustment. Death or divorce splits up families. The loss of ones I loved for years takes getting used to, but the grief remains.