This weekend I went to spend some time with my best friend. She was my very first best friend, the one who packed a bag full of books and stuffed animals and “ran away” with me when I got mad at my mom, the one whose house I ate dinner at almost as much as my own. She is the one who knew me from diapers to braces to crutches to heartbreak. There were times when we drifted, but then we grew up and drifted back together again. We only live three hours apart now but we don’t talk as much as we should. I drove up to Albany on Friday, mostly to visit her and catch up, but also to get to know her boyfriend, the one she tells me she’ll marry someday soon.
My last morning in Albany, over far too much breakfast meat, I regaled her with stories of the men in my life. It almost seemed trite. She’s been dating her boyfriend for almost two years, living with him for six months. And here I was, whining about a first date gone wrong or a crush I had on someone in another state.
But then I remembered why she is my best friend, why I tell her any of this in the first place, and why I will continue to seek her advice long after our own kids are packing their stuffed animals and heading for the next block.
“It’s weird,” I said. “Even though you know the relationship wasn’t right, you know you weren’t meant to be together, you still watch him with someone new and you think, ‘Why not me?’”
“But then you meet the right person,” she said calmly. “And you’ll be completely over everything that happened to you in the past, and you’ll be happy again, and then that Ex will look at you and think, ‘Why not me?’”