I couldn’t take her “no” for an answer.
Ours was a friendship of convenience: we met one night at a mutual friend’s party, and quickly discovered that we lived blocks away from each other. Soon, every part of our lives revolved around one another’s: we grocery shopped together and we made dinner together. We played games, late into the night, and we watched cheesy reality television together. We traveled together, in car and by plane, meeting one another’s families and entering into one another’s lives.
We were each other’s other. Then I moved six miles south. And I couldn’t understand why a friendship that had seemed so easy mere months before suddenly grew nearly impossible.
So, I hounded her.
I sent multiple texts. I called her repeatedly. I left cupcakes on her doorstep and emails in her inbox. And when she didn’t get back to me, I texted and called and left more cupcakes and emails.
Years later, I realized the truth of our friendship: we didn’t view each other in the same way. I gutted her as a friend of the soul, a rare find only whose friendship only few can fill. She saw me as a necessary friend of proximity – someone she could hang out with when the timing was right.
And in the process, when I couldn’t let go of what was, I became a draining friend.
It’s a hard thing to admit, but I also don’t think I’m the only one who’s missed the telltale signs in my own life.
Could this be you, too?