When Clare passed away last year, the woman who introduced us – Charee – didn’t tell me and I found out two days later. This hurt straight to the core.

Charee and I met at an All American Rejects gig in 2009. The poor lass was all on her own because she had no friends who enjoyed her flavor of music. My kid and I took her under our wing and we all became concert buddies for life.

Sadly, the feeling of betrayal persisted, and I almost allowed this devastating emotion lead me to disposing of this decade-long friendship.

Tonight, I turned an important corner in my recovery journey. The hurt I felt was not betrayal from Charee who was under threat from Clare’s “father” not to tell me or be barred from Clare’s funeral. I hurt because Clare was gone forever and a broken heart easily lashes out for meaning and understanding.

With all honesty, the betrayal was mine. I didn’t consider the impossible situation my friend was placed in, and I let Charee down as a friend for not recognizing this sooner.

This is a belated mea culpa, Charee. You did the right thing for Clare.

What follows is my text to Charee. It took a year for me to understand my emotions fully. Thus is the labored, illuminating nature of my recovery journey.

Thank you for being my friend, Charee.

I’m going to share something with you. It was touch and go for a time whether I wanted you in my life. I felt immensely betrayed and embarrassed learning Clare passed away and you didn’t tell me.

That feeling has passed, and I am glad for this. You have always been a kind, warm friend, and it took me some time and searching my heart to remember this.

Thank you for bringing Clare into my life. I am more because of this.