08 Mar An Old Frienemy Called Today
I had a friend that I met a long time ago. In fact, if I hadn’t found out the truth a few years ago, I would have believed her to be a twin sister, but she was not a sister. She was with me from my earliest memories. She liked the things I liked, thought like I thought. In many ways she influenced how I thought and what I liked. She was innocent, but curious, and grown up for her age…my age.
She was a playmate, a true companion. I was never alone, she filled up the loneliness. I trusted her, because she was so familiar. Over time, she became bolder. Her once, gentle suggestions became strong urges. She knew just what to say to make me give in to her. She pouted if I ignored her, she angered when I spoke my mind. When I would get mad at her, she would playfully smile and my heart would melt for her again. In our teens, she was reckless, and I loved her. She understood me. She never said “no” to me. She showed me things I’d never imagined; some exciting, and some shameful. But they were our secret.
She wasn’t jealous, though. No, in fact, she introduced me to many of my girlfriends. She picked them out for me. She knew exactly what I liked. She was never threatened, because she always knew I was hers. I was hers. That’s when she changed. The playmate turned into a master. The confidant turned into an extortionist. There were no more suggestions, no innocent games to explore, just demands to satisfy her endless cravings…my endless cravings. There were no sweetly shared secrets anymore, only threats to expose what she knew about me. In shame, I bowed to her demands. I hated her. I hated me. How could I be so weak?
I would have asked for help, but I was afraid of what others would think of me if they knew about my friend, my enemy. After I married, she disappeared…I thought. But she was still there, stalking, planning, waiting for her opportunity to be in charge again. She made her move, when my guard was down. She took advantage of me, reminding me of every childhood game and secret that she showed me…held over me. When I gave into her, she became so cruel. She laughed at me, mocked me, criticized me, and degraded me. I was no longer a man, I was a slave.
When I had lost my pride and dignity, I decided I had lost enough. I told my wife about my friend, my enemy. I prepared for the worst. I had expected that my wife would pick up where my nemesis had left off. I expected shock, ridicule, anger, and threats. But instead of condemnation I saw mercy. I mean, I looked at the physical embodiment of mercy! In her eyes I saw disappointment, but not retribution. In her voice I heard conviction, not condemnation. In her arms I felt forgiveness, not judgment. I looked into the mercy of God, and His mercy looked completely into me.
In an instant there was no darkness, no secret, no mocking voice in my head. My desire for my friend, my enemy, was gone. I didn’t need her. I didn’t want her. She wasn’t a part of me. She wasn’t related to me. She left my life, and God’s grace put a restraining order against this stalker.
It’s been a long time since I’ve heard from her. She called today to check on me, to see if I was happy, to see if I missed her. I hung up on her and blocked her number.