I recently began spending time with a new friend. How we ever came to be introduced has escaped me now (she’s likely a friend of a friend of my husbands, or something like that), but that’s beyond the point, anyways.
The first time we hung out together we went to dinner; two hours of filling ourselves with sushi and easy conversation. After the second time we went out, a week later, for coffee, I went home to my husband, excited.
“I feel like I’m back in the dating days, and I’ve just come home from a really great second date where you realize you could really see something with this person.”
“I feel like she probably needs a good friend even more than you do.”
“I feel really bad for her if that’s true,” I said, but the truth is that I hoped he was right. I hoped that she drove home from our mid-day coffee feeling like she had found a friend that she could really spend time with, really confide in, the way I did.
Over coffee she told me, among other things, that she was meeting a new friend for dinner that night. I felt instantly jealous, like I was already losing her friendship to someone else. She told me only that she seemed “quirky,” leaving the rest to my imagination.
When her name popped up my iPhone screen later that night I practically leapt up to get it. She had just returned from dinner, reciting something a little funny and a little silly that had happened. I immediately texted back.
Too funny. Otherwise, how was it? New best friend?
My heart was pounding. I’d been in this city for four years and while I had met some truly lovely people, I had yet to build a friendship even remotely close to the ones I had left behind when I moved. Laura was the only one who I felt could possibly fill this emptiness.
I stick to my original statement, she said, but the food was good.
In reality, even if she had a great time with this other person, it didn’t mean that we couldn’t develop a real friendship. Still, I felt only nervousness.
Not everyone can be as awesome as us, I texted back. What I was really saying was: please see something awesome in me. Please please please.
A truer statement may never have been uttered, she responded, and I thought: I’ll take it.
It meant I wasn’t being replaced before our friendship had really even gotten off the ground. It meant I wasn’t being looked over the way I had so many times in my past. It meant I still had time.
It meant more coffee dates, and if there’s one thing life needs, it’s more time gabbing with girlfriends over hot beverages.