today, i came home and found a package from a good friend of mine, Danli. She is a Chinese student i met at college when i took a linguistics class for my master’s degree, and she became my language partner. From there, our friendship grew. because we lived in different towns, we didn’t do a ton of stuff together, but we would get together every so often for coffee, lunch, or some random fun activity, like bowling. We mostly stayed in contact through facebook, email, and phone. i loved hanging out with her because she had such a curiosity about american culture, and she was so forthright about wanting to be my friend or giving me a compliment, something that i think americans hold back on because we’re so self-conscious. my favorite thing was if i told her something that she couldn’t quite believe, she’d get that wide-eyed look of disbelief which always made me laugh and would say “reeeeally?” she was good at making me laugh.
in the box that i received this evening were two sets of beautiful blue silk pajamas from China, a gift Danli told me she would get for me and Jamie. It was a really nice surprise. Then, I read the card. she explained that her husband was getting a job in NYC, and they were leaving immediately, so she wouldn’t be able to say goodbye. I got really sad. it affected me much more than i thought it would, even though i knew that this day would probably come. her husband went to Mississippi State to study military weapons engineering. it’s not like i really expected him to find a job in podunk, mississippi. but i did hope they’d end up in Memphis or New Orleans. So knowing that they are moving to NYC is as bad as them moving back to Shanghai. It might as well be as far away, and since they have no real ties to MS, they won’t be back. i hate losing friends. we’ll keep in touch through the Internet for a few years, probably, but you know how those types of friendships go. it’ll dwindle down to a message here or there on facebook until there’s nothing.
the worst thing about the situation is that as bad as i feel today, jamie came in and couldn’t believe that i was so upset about it. it was like he didn’t want to be bothered with the discomfort it caused him to see me cry and be upset about it. so he got a beer and went four-wheeler riding with the guys. typical man, right? why are men like that? why do they have to have such disdain for any show of excess emotion? is it too much to ask to hope that your husband has some compassion? all i needed was a shoulder to cry on for a bit, and i would have been fine. but to add insult to injury, i was shrugged off as if my feelings were silly. it’s fine if he doesn’t quite understand where i’m coming from, but i needed his sympathy.