I’ve been on a hiatus because I’ve sort of been in shock.

A while back I blogged about running into a girlfriend at the grocery store. She tearfully confessed dire straits and asked for a $2,500 loan. I was glad to help her and considered it a gift.

After that we fell out of lost touch. Until recently.

My husband and I were at a concert, milling around before the show started, when I heard her familiar voice. I was overjoyed to see her and thrilled that she looked so happy.

Well, that didn’t last.

“We’ve just been backstage,” she said, showing off a sparkling wristband that said VIP.

“Wow, how cool!” I asked if she’d won a radio contest or knew someone in the band. Nope. She and her husband and some of their friends (she gestured to a flock of people I didn’t recognize) had purchased this all-access VIP package – for $1,500 each.

“Um, wow!” I was sort of speechless. It’s been a few years since we saw each other, so I guess things have taken a turn for the better. I was willing to just chalk it up to life’s crazy ups and downs. But no.

“Where are you guys sitting?” she asked. My husband showed her his ticket stub and she immediately began cackling. “You’re in the cheap seats!” she shrieked. “Come on, you should live a little! We’re right down front!”

I tried to chuckle and change the subject, but she persisted, teasing us for being “tightwads.”

Really? Really? REALLY????

My husband, as is his practice, was checking sports scores on his Blackberry, so he pretty much checked out. Then her husband came over to shake hands and it started all over again.

They’re sitting in the nosebleed seats!” she said to her husband. After a few more awkward moments they rejoined their new friends and made their way to these plush seats right up front. We found our seats which were a good bit farther away but still offered a very fine view.

I can’t remember a single song. I sat there in a fog the rest of the night. She begged me not to breathe a word when I agreed to help all those years ago, and I didn’t. I never even told my husband.

So I have no one to talk to about this. I don’t know if she feels bad about what happened and is just covering up her embarrassment with annoying behavior, or if she’s forgotten all about it, or what.

I am so angry for so many reasons. I have never missed the money I lent her and never expected to see it again. I might have expected a little gratitude, or at least less rudeness. I hate the feelings this episode has evoked in me. It has made me want to never extend myself again.

I feel like I’ve been cheated out of a part of myself I won’t ever see again.

This is the only thing that helps right now.