Turning Tables

I know Adele is awesome. I know she has been on the radio a lot and some people get tired of that and I probably would too if I listened to the radio. But I don’t and I am still awed every time I hear her. If I’d heard her back in the day when I was still in school and used to borrow friends’ CDs to record them on my tapes, I’d have done that to her albums. I’d have listened obsessively and known the sequence of the songs and all of the lyrics. Now I am far too lazy and busy to obsess in this way over albums and artists but I feel like Adele should inspire me to hunt down all her albums, or at least buy them all on itunes. Here’s the song I want you to listen to before reading the rest of the post, and if you’ve already heard it, play it whilst reading the post.

It didn’t remind me of an old love or flame or whatever, it just reminded me of a once best friend who has remained a part of my life like a shoe full of pebbles that I just can’t take off. After yet another strange meeting with her where I got the feeling that she just didn’t like my very much, I got on the plane back home to wonder why I bothered. Should I stop seeing her and make some excuse every time she tries? Or just tell her she’s too much of a bitch for me and leave it at that? It’s not like I’ve haven’t tried before, but each time, some time passes and someone makes a move forward and somehow some stuff is forgotten and some more stuff is remembered. And we play our little game again making sure we are a part of each other’s lives that diverged 7 years ago.

Ever since that year of university when we both got our hearts broken (by two different guys of course) we’ve struggled with our relationship. Like a couple that no one else understands, we continue to be together on and off. This is my masochistic relationship, the one where I can’t let go even though I know I should. Just like those soap operas, our timings have always been off. When she was ready to be open, she came to my Camden apartment and cried and told me that I had disappeared. I just wasn’t ready. All I understood was that she did want me around but I didn’t know to tell her that I had left because I wasn’t being treated well and I wasn’t sure if I was still welcome. I didn’t tell her that I had felt so betrayed by those actions that she considered unimportant, I couldn’t bring myself to trust her again. I acted like it was all ok again but in my head I may well just have been singing, “I won’t let you close enough to hurt me“.

Yet I hold on to the image of a much nicer different girl, the one who cleaned my new apartment with me, who taught me to cook rice, who shared cigarettes in the park with me, whose little room I would walk into some evenings to drink tea and talk about that hugely important future, and all my ideas and feelings. The friend who gave such damn good advice when I was down, she could sort out me out in a jiffy, and I would leave with a neat little to do list. The one who wrote very important notes to me on pink paper that I still have stashed somewhere recounting all the things that we had done that meant so much. God I miss her.

The thing about married life though is there is no more this urgent need to show up at your friend’s house and demand they take you back. There is no pressing need to call urgently, no need or time to spend hours on the phone arguing or working out your issues. Instead here I am trying not to rock the boat as usual. Well rocking the boat be damned, I’m going in again. I really have nothing to lose.


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