A couple of days ago I received a telephone call from an old friend of my ex. I always get an uncomfortable feeling when speaking with people with whom I share this common bond, because before too long, I am certain that the conversation will veer in that general direction. The segue will be framed as a question: “So, have you heard anything from John?” My own answer is not relevant; the real issue lies with the broken relationship between my ex and the person on the other end of the telephone.
I will listen politely, express sympathy at the grievances or concerns aired, and sometimes remind the other party that John has a mental illness. While that alone does not serve as a carte blanche excuse for inappropriate or misunderstood behavior, it does help to frame some perspective around the reasons that certain events have unfolded in the way that they have.
I have no control over that illness and while it grieves me to know that it remains untreated, I find some relief with the knowledge that my ex has a relationship with the God of his understanding and I trust that His wisdom is a guiding force in John’s life. Turn it over. Let go. Breathe.