It had to have been about 8 years ago when I first met Mackenzie. She had set up a photo shoot with my wife and I was leaving for a wedding that day and just barely met her in passing. Little did I know that this was going to end up as a long term friendship with many ups and downs.
Personally I like to remember the good times. Life is too short to hold any type of grudge. I reconnected with Mac recently and honestly it was great. It brought back memories of causing trouble together, piggy back rides in New Orleans and morning doughnut runs.
She used to call me “dad” but we were too much like two kids when we were together. The dad comment started when we were out shopping and the clerk assumed she was my daughter. It just stuck and became a very long running joke.
I think with friendship you (as a friend) have to remember one major thing. To have a friend you must be a friend. This also means you have made a choice to be this person’s friend. This means you accept them for who they are, good and bad.
Of course sometimes we have to rid ourselves from the bad ones, this should be common sense, but just because someone does something wrong doesn’t necessarily mean they are bad. Remember, everyone has their own issues, I have mine too, this never excuses my behavior but it gives it reason.
I have made my own mistakes in friendships in the past. Sometimes it has cost me the friendship. I have not always thought of life as I do now. Maybe this is why I am more forgiving than I used to be. I do not act or react to things the way I once did, so why would I expect others to stay the same and not have a slight change of perspective as they grow older as well?
Forgiveness and friendships are things we can choose. We don’t have to forget, and we don’t have to forgive. But I forgive for me, I also have learned to hold myself accountable for my own mistakes. There is always more than one side to a story, even if you disagree with it, it is another side.
I stumbled upon some images of Mac from when she distracted me from a surprise party my wife was throwing for me for my 40th. For whatever reason this was my favorite photo shoot I ever had with her. It was just fun, no agenda, just taking some photos together for personal projects and hanging out. We joked around, had a great time and to me this is how I will always remember her. This shoot is filled with great memories and it always leaves a good feeling inside of me.
This is my friend, I made this choice and I am happy I did. That is all that matters.