I was a freshman in high school when my friend Barbara was accepted into a college in Canada. She took up political science, under the impression that she would pursue a law degree. She had a boyfriend here in California before she left, but they broke up because she didn’t feel like he could be faithful during a long distance relationship.
We had been close friends ever since I started high school, so we kept in touch, mostly through Facebook chat. We talked to each other about three-four times a week, and talked about everything there was to talk about. Barbara was usually buzzed, if not fully intoxicated. It was in college where she discovered her weakness for red wine, the cheapest kind with the highest alcohol concentration.
Most of our conversations started with her sending me a message so she could complain about how college has been going. It was mostly just random stuff, and I barely listened, as I had my own problems at the time. Our conversations were never actual conversations, they were more like monologues that neither of us were actually paying attention to. We both talked a lot, but neither of us took the time to listen.
I didn’t notice the amount of alcohol she consumed, or the stream of complaints on life she made. I also didn’t think she noticed how wrong everything seemed to me, how I was so tired of living life the way I was.
The fact remained that she was there more as a comfort, even if she never really understood or cared what I was going through. And a few years later, when we reconnected, I learned that she felt the same way about our relationship. To her, it didn’t matter that I wasn’t listening, or that I was too absorbed with my own issues. The important thing was that we were there for each other, and that was what she needed more than anything.
The funny thing was, I wasn’t a good friend to her honestly. But she wasn’t a good friend to me either. We were just way too caught up in our own worlds to care about anyone else. But that doesn’t matter now. We were there for each other when we needed a person the most. At the end of the day, that was enough for the both of us.