I broke up with one of my best friends a month ago.
And I have felt nothing but sweet relief that it is over. It all came to a head in my local shopping centre carpark.
I felt the dread coming on that morning when I knew I had to see her for brunch. And I knew she would do nothing but bitch about me and our other friends.
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We’d met when we were both 20 at uni. We’d formed a strong bond because we knew the same people and went to similar schools. Then I moved away and only saw her every second month. But every time I did, it was lovely.
And then I got engaged and it started being not so… lovely.
It was like every time I caught up with her it was a competition. A game that only she was playing. She had to tell me how much better her life was over mine. She had to prove that she was more successful. Had a better job. Had a better house. Had a better partner.
On the outside, butter wouldn’t melt. But behind her eyes it felt like she was screaming ‘MY LIFE IS BETTER, SEE?’.
And still I sat, and listened, and took it.
I’d nod along with how great her life was, take an ear bashing over mine, and walk away feeling terrible.
It was like she had this hold over me that made me feel like I needed approval from her.
So, back to brunch.
Everything played out as it usually did. She pretended to care about my job, made snarky comments about my fiance, and feigned interest with a very fake smile when I told her about how I was planning a trip overseas.