Yesterday I took my sister Brooke and a couple of her friends to look for apartments for next fall. We looked at three places, including the complex where I lived my first year off campus. It was my idea to go there—I was arguing that it’s really nice to have enclosed hallways, instead of your apartment opening up right into the cold. (Also, with the strict curfew rules the university imposes on approved housing, it’s a warm place to hang out with friends after curfew.)
It was kind of weird to be back there. It even smelled the same. Brought back a lot of memories. We sat in the office and ate the freshly (under)baked cookies they had for us, and I imagined how much fun my sister and her friends will have, no matter where they live. I reminisced about how much fun I’d had, and my mind came back to something I think about probably all too often—what my single friends are doing now.
They’re following their dreams in law school, grad school or careers. They’re doing things for themselves. They’re dancing, partying, having fun. I’m getting up at 7 AM, changing diapers and watching television all day long, and going to bed early. I’m not even twenty-four. While I love Ryan and Hayden and I know this is where I belong, I can’t help but feel jealous of my friends who can still live for themselves.
Yesterday as I was back in my single stomping grounds, I reminisced about how I spent my singlehood—in those conveniently enclosed hallways. There was one boy in particular. I wanted so badly for him to care about me—not in a romantic way, though. I wanted him to be my best (guy) friend, my greatest confidant. And while he wanted to be my friend, he never could give me the depth of friendship that I needed. After I moved out of those apartments (and into Ryan’s neighborhood), he and I spoke only twice.
Last night, after stoking the fires of nostalgia all afternoon, I came home to Ryan waiting for me on the couch. He invited me to curl up with him. As I settled into his arms, I realized that Ryan was the friend that I’d yearned for years earlier, my greatest confidant. And while my friends do get to pursue their dreams now, I know I’m where I belong.