S came to visit and stay over yesterday. It's the first time we've met since he moved out and I came back from America. It was wonderfully nice.
He helped me move his old (but still good) computer desk to my son's computer corner which now looks much nicer and has a lot more desk space. We sat, had coffee, chatted and made a nice dinner together. We (all three of us) also finished reading the book we had been reading out loud leading up to Christmas - The Christmas Mystery by Jostein Gaarder.
The book has 14 chapters, one for each day of the advent time. We had not gotten to finish it for Christmas because my son and I were traveling. It felt really, really wonderful to finish the story and have a little family "after-Christmas". We even lit all the candles on the wreath and everything.
We also talked a lot. The kid asked about the breaking up, what it felt like. He seemed very curious. He also wanted to make sure that his favorite friends of S would still be coming to visit. Which they still will. When I explained to him that sometimes ways part, he mused about whether sometimes ways also cross again. I told him that yes, certainly, I would consider moving into a the same retirement home with S but we would never be romantic partners again. My son thought that was super cool.
We explained to him that sometimes things don't work romantically but that you can still be very good friends. While we explained this, it struck me again how lucky I am. S and I are the grandest of friends. In fact, having him over felt like it used to feel like having a good friend over for a sleepover and some movies when I was little.
I feel very blessed that we parted on good terms, despite the emotionally tumultuous times in between. I love that I now have this wonderful, really BIG (as in a big person) friend. I explained it like this to my son:
"When something is not working in your life, you have to do something about it early on so that you can still part as friends. If you don't do something about it, resentment piles up and at some point, things just explode. If you need distance, take some distance. Maybe you'll come back. Maybe you won't. But having some space to figure things out is important. It doesn't do to just stay together and get angrier every day. Far better to part in peace."
Do something about the stuff that isn't working.