Some of us hold our friends closer than we do our families, and usually for good reason. My now-former best friend was a part of my family. We became friends in the sandbox 20 years ago this past February. Our parents coordinated vacations, we went to summer camp together, and we shared stories of first kisses, first dates, bad fashion, bad boyfriends, "the first time", promises to be in each other's weddings, and everything else two chicks can talk about. At school, we were called 'the twins'--yeah, it was that serious. We went our separate ways for college, but managed to stay close with weekend visits and spring break trips. My roommates thought she was a student at our school as much as she was at my place to visit, lol.
But as much as things stay the same, they do change. In high school, she was the wild one (we were both wild, but she was the zoo so to speak, lol)--always had some story about some boy and forever in looooove. I held her hand at Planned Parenthood and did the walk of confusion with her as she weighed her options and made her decisions--twice. I never really thought about it at that point, but she was laying the blueprint for her later adult life our subsequent 'break up'.
There comes a point when you should know better, when you stop trying to prove your adulthood to the world, when your womanhood is graceful and not forced, when you learn the value of your soul and your body. We all need a hand to hold or someone to be our rock and hold us up every now and again, but when that 'now and again' becomes 'more often than not', friendships get strained.
Our friendship was strained to the point of dysfunction. Rather than be proud of her when she announced her position as a reading teacher in a well-known charter school, I honestly felt sorry for her students because I knew that they'd be in for a roller coaster ride. Thankfully, I was wrong. She handles her job with grace, but when she leaves that school, all hell breaks loose. Since I moved to the Urrea a year and a half ago (*time is flying. I can't believe it's been that long.), I've settled into adult life and stopped living like I'm a carefree college senior (still having fun though!). But this girl, with her grown-up job and grown up responsibilities, still thinks that getting pissy drunk to hook up with a man she met at the bar that night and going to work with a hangover is still cute.
I'm in no way trying to say I'm better than her. I can't do that because I've screwed up royally too. But at this point, there's nothing left. Usually, when you hook up with an ooooollllld friend, you still manage to find some common ground or find a way to have a good time, even if your lives have taken divergent paths. But this time, no. When I was home last, and when she came to visit last week with a few of our other friends from home, it was gone. No longer old girlfriends, but two people who used to know each other back in the day. We both recognize it, but I'm the one doing something about it and I feel sort of guilty or bad or something. It's like breaking up with an old boyfriend that you stay with only because the relationship is comfortable--difficult, but necessary.
I walked away from my