Or, how I know I'm a grown up.
When I was a young monkey, I attended the local public school like any human child would. And, as any human child did, I experienced some level of teasing and/or meanness from some of the other students.
One of the more perplexing incidents was a pretty mean rumor that was spread about me. It was one of those rumors that had the right blend of sex and scandal and person you wouldn't expect getting caught that the student body seemed to really take hold of it . . . for about two weeks until squirrels distracted them or something.
Being young, I was distraught. (Especially because no part of the rumor was true. And, being young, I assumed this would forever color my life. Whew.) I consulted my friends to find out who started the rumor. During lunch, one day, a friend pointed out the "source" of the rumor to me. It was a girl I didn't know, didn't have any classes with, and had no idea how on earth she would think to know anything about what I did away from school.
Knowing the rumor came from a near stranger helped me realize how silly it was to fret about it. But, I've always had a level of dislike or distrust of this person.
Fast forward to the present day. In the hoopla of facebook, many of the people who attend my school, especially my graduating classmates, rushed to friend everyone else who attended our school or was in my class. Thus, I find my self "facebook friends" with this rumor-starter. I'm pretty sure she has no recollection of being the source of two weeks of angst in my young life.
She recently experienced the death of her mother. Her grief is overwhelming. And, I find myself offering her messages of comfort (like going out of my way to send her private messages) and sympathy. I'm not quite sure why I'm drawn to her grieving . . . except that perhaps it hits close to home.
Still, I wonder if she remembers the days when she was number one enemy? Strange, this growing up. Some grudges you can let go . . . others we wear like armor.