It always made me a little ill in movies when one red, teary eyed teen girl turns to her friend with her problems and the friend simply answers “You’ll eventually get over it” as she hands the distressed girl a tissue. I never quite figured out why this phrase “Get over it” was supposed to comfort anyone. It’s such a cold, manufactured order neglecting the tendencies of humans and how our feelings work.
I was blessed with my relationships in high school. A core group of attractive, talented, inspiring, loving and devoted kids, my friends and I loved each other with all that we had. I don’t remember the exact moment when we all became inseparable, but soon I was attached at the hip with three other kids and I still love them to this day. College was a new experience for me, forcing me to work at making new friends instead of giving me the leisure and privilege to have people who already loved me.
In college I met a lot of people, including boys (a concept I never had time for in high school). A few crushes here and there, one that turned serious and then instantaneously turned backwards at his urging, as well as total submersion into a world of unfamiliarity amongst people, location, and expectation taught me to hold onto whatever and whoever I got. I met a kid the first few weeks of school and we hung out a lot, then some rumors got started by a “friend” and now we don’t speak, unless it’s about each other. The things he heard and chose to believe couldn’t have been farther from the truth, but instead of righting the wrongs, I got over it, and I wish I hadn’t. The truth it, I enjoyed his company. I enjoyed the time we spent together, the music he introduced me to and then things he said that made me laugh. I was so caught up in “getting over it” to spare myself from the onslaught of gossip that I lost a friend and now I don’t care whether we ever become friends again.
I’ve never been convinced that any situation is bettered or overcome by getting over it. In fact, I see getting over it as a sort of surrender, a white flag that negates any intention of commitment or understanding regarding the situation. I see getting over something as such a final, unyielding, stolid position on life. I think life is to short to say “never again” why should we get over things that once meant the world to us? Isn’t that like self inflicted torture, akin to forbidding ourselves from eating chocolate or nor allowing ourselves to take a more complicated short cut to run into the cute man in a business suit? It’s okay to deal with things, to grow with things, to work with things, but getting over something is denying it magnitude in our life, a magnitude that is probably supposed to be there. And it’s always funny how the scabs formed by getting over it are to easily torn away by something reminiscent of whatever it is we got over.
I hope one day, in some film somewhere, a red, teary-eyed teen girl, having turned to her friend with her problems, is answered by a tissue and a “Don’t get over it.” I believe in not getting over it, in keeping it somewhat familiar to us to learn from it, whatever it may be. This I believe.
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