It's a trick I learned from blogging about the high-traffic Drudge Report: That's to search the archives for an unflattering photo of the nemesis. And that's what I have done.
Huebner and I matriculated together at Seton Hill University, Greensburg, Pennsylvania during the 1960s. We weren't friends. Didn't travel in the same circles.
And probably we would never have seen each other again after the 1967 graduation had I not run into her at the Cathedral of Learning of the University of Pittsburgh in the late 1970s. After that, we got together a few times but the relationship never got traction.
That was then.
Somehow, shame on me, I re-grouped with some Seton Hill classmates on Facebook several years ago. They were Lee Harrison, Irene Nunn, and Charlotte Toal. Huebner became part of the hail-hail-the-gang-is-all-here.
The New York Metro area was getting too expensive for me. I had to find a new home.
One place on my list, along with Spain (where I had once lived and worked) and Ecuador, was Arizona. I had done business there plenty when employed full time with an oil corporation.
Huebner was living in a retirement community in Oro Valley, AZ. We talked about "it." That is, my making tha cross-country move. And that I did. She was the only person I knew in AZ.
From the get-go, I sensed that no, you can't go home again in relationships, particularly one that never had developed. That was Easter Sunday 2014. I had treated Huebner to lunch at her retirement development. Inside, I rolled my eyes. AZ was not looking like it had when I had been conducting business there.
By the end of May of that year (emotions develop and fester fast) I responded to Huebner's e-greeting card with a request not to contact me again.
Likely, I will never figure that one out. Buddhist teacher Jack Kornfield recommends we don't try so hard to figure stuff out.
That's when I stopped attempting to make sense of the puzzle of why Huebner elicited such a negative reaction in me. After all, the AZ pilgrimage, which lasted 27 months, was a roaring success:
- I healed from the careerism of New York
- I reset my communications boutique to what was in demand
- I paid off all debt
- I built enough of a nest egg to purchase a house (if I ever do that again)
- I became self-aware enough to return back East (not New York), which I did at the end of August 2016.
Humans are put together with layers of concealment. Do we ever really know a person? I was clueless about my mother until my aunts filled me in on her youth several years after her death. Then, I had some insight but embraced that she would remain an enigma.
I will never know who Huebner is. What I do know is that I am not attending our alma mater's 50th reunion next year. That encounter with her and the other classmates on Facebook triggers a panic attack in me when there is a flashback.
How I regret reaching back into the past. If that has also been your experience, please share that with readers. Contact me at email@example.com. Maybe we won't make sense of this kind of trauma but just be able to warn others to not look back.