(This was written on the last day of June).
I’m writing about this now because I’m still feeling kinda down about it.
I have a friend that I’ve known for about 15 years now. We’ve been closed but lately we’ve grown apart, especially when his then girlfriend expressed a dislike for me so I kept away. However we do keep in contact online and occasionally meet up. For the past year or so, we chatted online frequently and met up to celebrate each other’s birthdays. However since he left his job to freelance, he doesn’t keep regular hours or come online much anymore. But I do send him the occasional text message.
I invited him to my wedding but since he was a solo, I gave him the option of bringing a date, but also gave him the option of not attending because I hate attending weddings where apart from either the bride or the groom, I don’t know anyone there. He couldn’t convince a friend to attend with him so I reiterated, it’s okay if you don’t wanna come. We can meet up for dinner another time. He insisted he wanted to attend and RSVP for the wedding. Even gave me his mailing address for me to send the wedding invite to.
A few weeks before the wedding, I asked his help for a wedding project and he agreed. He even sent me the list of props that he could lend me for the project. However when I asked him about it after that, he didn’t reply immediately. It was only after 2 – 3 chasers that he apologised that he had been overseas but he would get back to me within a week.
I waited 2 more weeks but no news. By then it was close to project deadline and I was getting desperate. So I thought maybe he changed his mind about helping and I decided not to press the issue. I asked one last time, again giving him an exit by saying hey are you still passing me the props? it’s okay if you can’t but do let me know so I can go buy them instead. I don’t want to be rash and jump the conclusion and in the end it could have been he dropped his phone into the bowl or something.
Again no reply. I just left it as that as I got swept up in the wedding preparations.
The wedding came and went. At the end of the whole thing, I realised he didn’t even show up. What’s worse, he didn’t even have the courtesy to tell me he couldn’t make it. The 4 weeks after that I didn’t receive a single apology for not attending the wedding. Even a lame apology of “I forgot” I’d have accepted. I can be really forgiving with friends if I want to.
I forgot about the matter until today when I wondered to myself what happened to him. I thought something may have happened to him and while I’m sitting here pitying myself, he could be lying somewhere in a hospital with his head in a brace. He doesn’t have much activity on Facebook so I checked the next thing, Instagram.
There he was, posting a picture of his latest Lego project, just 2 days ago. It is obvious that there was nothing wrong with his head. Even if he were in hospital, he was still of sound mind to take a picture, add some photographic effects to it and load it to Instagram. To say I was disappointed is an understatement. I can’t even describe what I’m feeling now. Anger that he went through all that trouble to get invited and then don’t turn up? Disappointed that he didn’t even bother? Puzzled as to what I did wrong to warrant such a response?
Richard told me to leave things be as he probably didn’t want to talk. While that is the only thing I can do now, I can’t help but feel that the onus is on him to at least apologise for not attending. That is the barest of civility even if I had done something wrong to upset him. Even if I had upset him, why go through the pretense of wanting to be there as my friend on my wedding day? At the crux of it, it’s not even about the wedding anymore. If he didn’t want to be friends, he could have gently brushed me aside than to keep me thinking everything was still okay. Why pretend to still be friends when he thinks we’re not?
What’s worse is that I actually thought of him as one of the few friends I’d bother keeping in touch for a long long time.