The Engagement

I found out about my oldest friend’s engagement via Facebook. We haven’t spoken since December, when I was mad at her for skipping out on my Birthday party, feeling that she wanted to spend more time with her friends back home than she did me – the one who’d known her almost her whole life. Angry and bitter that she obviously was getting along fine without me, I stubbornly refused to admit that I missed her, hiding her posts from my newsfeed in a bid to hide the fact that she was still enjoying herself — although I was too.

I text her this evening to say congratulations, giving her a gift of my latest “beauty hack” that her boyfriend — fiancé! — will surely laugh at her for. An awful thought ran through my head: what if she thinks I’m only messaging her so I’m still in with a shot at bridesmaid? Could I be coming across that selfish? When really, all I wanted to do was give her a huge hug and thank her for sticking with him for so long, we can all still believe in true love going the distance. And admire the ring of course.

We forget small arguments can take on so much meaning. We think things will always blow over but if we don’t try to heal them, the wounds will not heal. We get caught up in who was right, who was wrong, and who is hurt the most while forgetting that we only ever felt this way in the first place because we care so deeply. We think that it’ll all be over by Christmas, by the next Birthday, by the next great life event, but we forget that life is still going and time is simply passing us by. We forget all of these things until something ridiculous like a “Facebook Life Event” reminds us just what we have been missing.

She still doesn’t know I’m moving to Edinburgh at the end of this week, nor has she met my new beau of about four months – an unbelievable construct when she previously was the life coach in all matters of my heart. She is the girlfriend I looked up to most when it came to romance: she and her fiancé had the most relaxed looking relationship on the surface; they managed long distance and short; they even managed to live together in her parents’ house — a feat I could never envisage! I am so, so very proud of her for making it this far.

Somehow, because of the time, space and other scientific continuums which seem to be felt between us, I can’t tell her this.  I thought I’d pass my sentiments over to you guys, in the hopes that you may tell your oldest friends how wonderful you think they are, and how you hope their weddings will be as perfect as they were when you planned them at fourteen. Because a horrific thought plagues me; I may not be there on her special day to tell her all this in person. I thought we’d have bucked ourselves up by now, and caved. I thought we’d have remembered growing up in the same skin and having awkwardly stupid conversations about Mickey Mouse underwear and that I’d be there to tuck her the long ribbons of her bouquet neatly into check and make sure her bra wasn’t showing.

Perhaps I still shall be, somewhere. If I am not, know that I will be there in spirit, and that I am thinking of you fondly tonight, old friend.

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