The Addiction of Best-friends

It’s the end of January- already.

Crazy how this month has vanished in a blink. 

Being absent from Christmas and New Years, kind of felt like I missed the things that usually kiss the year goodbye. The rituals and people that swaddle you up in a blanket of retrospection; with the outcome feeling like you’re stuck in the same year, just with extended months. 

I don’t know why anyone would want to, since 2022 was a pretty hard year for most, or so I keep hearing…

One of my friends V, quit a toxic relationship that never seemed to end and managed to picked up a sweetheart who took her Scuba diving in the Phillipines.

Another friend was punished for the horrors of the Ukrainian war, as her life-long friends began erasing themselves from her life. 

My mum transitioned back into a 17 year-old-girl, with triathlons being her drug of choice; and a dancing queen every Friday night at- The Hoey Moey – and no that’s not me being mean, that’s the name of the bar.

And I happened to meet my loneliness self at the beginning of the year, and alternatively met my most extroverted self towards the end. 

I also became a cat person out of nowhere, met Liam Hemsworth and slept with his narcissistic doppelgänger, who I later learned attempted to kill his ex-girlfriend.

I also picked up my dream job I applied for a year ago and finished 2022 relaxing under the Balinese sun. 

Christmas was also great, spent fighting with a red-head, almost getting bitten by a diseased-dog in a club and then climbing up a tree in the hopes of escaping a Russian man who had bought us all shots, only for him to steal my sneaker, in a rogue Cinderella-esk move.

But alas, Cinderella flew off on the bike of another and arrived home just in time for sunrise- with her one shoe.

Yes, 2022 was definitely wild in some ways and rather sad in others. 

But 4 steps forward and 3 steps back, as they say. 

One Tuesday night, a few friends and I arrived on a couch to watch the new season of the Bachelor. 

Ironically half of the couch was married, half had official jobs like Lawyer and Physio while the other half were still studying fashion. 

“I can’t wait to hear this, my Instagram needs some fresh controversy,” the lawyer said, shoving his phone in my face. 

“ Don’t aim that at me. Aim it at her!”

“ Nah, Ksenia is too nice.

“ You obviously haven’t met SENIA- her alter-ego!  She’s meaner than me! “ Ksenia immediately begins to cackle, hurling a pillow at my head. 

“ What? No! “ Kevin says.

“ She really is-“ Ben, her physio husband confirmed.

“ Well I guess.. you would know, ” The lawyer laughed, directing his phone back at me.

“You’re her best-friend.” 

At that, I tried not to flinch. Such a label had caused me a lot of pain over the past few years; 2022 being the first year where I didn’t have that one person to remind me who I was and vice-versa.

I use to think having a best-friend was a super-power. The best compliment you can receive. To be someone’s favourite person so much so, that they are proud to call you theirs.

On Christmas Day in Bali, the red-head and I discussed whether best-friendships only made sense when you were a child. 

 “ Best-friends are super toxic,” she had said. 

“ I refuse to have them. I have different friends for different things.” 

“ But everyone has their favourites…” I argued. 

 “…like a particular pair of socks or underwear…” 

“ Yeah and they wear out after a while. No, variety is the spice of life, kid.” I watched as she downed her Aperol Spritz; my mind slowly sipping the information.

 “But what if you’re upset, who do you go to?” I asked.

“ Myself- I self-soothe. Or I talk to my dad, he’s great at listening and forgetting. “

“I have one of those….” I said.

It was the wisest thing anyone had said to me in ages.

Especially as I had been turning the concept over in my head for all of 2022. And finally, an answer that made sense.

But then I thought back to Ksenia’s birthday…

“Are you busy today?” She texted me.  

“I thought we could have coffee and some cake for my birthday.”

“ What- It’s your birthday?”  I texted back. 

“ Why didn’t you say anything?!”

“It’s no big deal. Ben’s at work and I’m seeing another friend tonight. If your busy I have my journal, which is usually how I spend my birthdays, so it’s fine.” 

“No, this is the first birthday I’m sharing with you! We must celebrate! Give me an hour.”

I remember as I rushed off with a dog-leash in one hand and money for flowers in the other, how my heart purred with warmth, knowing she wanted to spend her special day with me. 

I remember when I first noticing her- when she was still just a  stranger – this tall girl, in a cream coat and brown boots.

You could always find her speckled coffee cup with a gold moon on it before you saw her. And without realising, my mind began to search for her at uni. She would often work opposite me in the same classroom, yet we wouldn’t exchange a word with each other for months, until one day.

Perhaps a loophole could be – if I didn’t want just one favourite sock, I could have a couple odd ones that I rotate weekly.

And if my dog ate one, then I would take that as a sign from the universe that I should dispose of said friend (just kidding).

Upon scrolling Instagram one day, I spotted the red-head’s wise words, just written in a different way-

“Don’t build homes in other people.“ 

The last time I didn’t have a best-friend was when I was eleven. Perhaps at twenty-five, it was time to be brave and leave that idea behind.

“I will not build homes in other people. 
I will not build homes in other people.

I repeat those words every morning, as my New Year’s resolution. 

“This year, I will build a home in myself and it will be beautiful****” 

**Complete with a coffee machine, a dog and a leather couch.**


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