About a year ago, my best friend came to visit me because she knew I was having a difficult time. I told her I was unhappy and felt guilty about how my life had turned out because of the decisions I had made. I told her I wished I could go back in time and change things.
I lived with this constant fear that no matter what choice I made, I would be unhappy with it.
My best friend told me that I couldn’t think like that because I was making it impossible for myself to be happy. She told me that when we plan in life, we have to fully commit to it and not kind of commit to it. She said the same applies to all life decisions, be it a move or a relationship or a job.
She said if I kept wondering what if, I would never be able to find happiness; instead, she told me to focus on what is.
She told me that we choose what we choose and it is not going to help anyone if we keep hoping for the best without accepting the choice we have made; she told me to try to find the good in what I have chosen.
She told me wherever I decide to live, accept the lifestyle of the place and be open to adapting. She said I cannot choose to live in the woods and complain about the lack of cosmopolitan restaurants, just as I cannot choose to live in a big city and complain that I miss the quiet lifestyle and nature every day.
And I could not agree with her more. I have experienced this with many friends when they ask me what they should do, and no matter what suggestion I give them, they say, “But what if?”
Seesawing between the decisions I have made has only added stress to my life, the same way it is making so many people sad. We choose a lifestyle but do not want to be a grown up about it and take responsibility for it.
We had both left home at an early age, but somehow, she had managed to adapt and grow while I resisted change and stayed mentally stuck in my early 20s.
She told me it made her sad to see me like this and how it worried her to see me drowning in my self-made mental puddle. Normally, I do not like listening to other people when they tell me what to do, but I always valued her advice.
She told me I have within me what I need to make myself happy and I need to find that, but I must be ready for it and that she would always be there. I love so many things about her, and one of my favorite things is how she always looked at me without any judgment.
She is kind, but she would never give me the fluffy stories—she always tells me things the way they are.
She said whatever I decide to do, make it my own. She told me to stop fighting against my choices and contradicting myself. She said that to truly live and experience life, I have to be inclusive and stop seeing myself as an outsider—it is not important to always try to be different. She told me there will always be differences, but I should always try to involve myself in my community and society.
I met my best friend when I was nine. I cannot remember how we became friends. It was long before we cared about what was cool. I connected with her instantly and formed a life-long bond.
She is someone that I consider my soulmate. She is someone who will always be an especially important part of my life.
They say you are lucky if you are still friends with your childhood best friend, and I think it’s even rarer to stay best friends with them.
From a young age, she was very funny. She knew how to tell jokes and make everyone laugh; she had a talent for telling funny stories without ever being cruel. She was never mean.
She told me life is unpredictable and you never know when things will change. She told me you never know when you will meet someone incredible or when you will lose someone close to your heart, and how we must cherish those people and moments as they happen.
She told me to work hard and save money to go on vacations but never work so much that work becomes my life. It is more than self-care, it is maintaining your sanity by staying healthy.
She told me to go out and have fun, but do not depend on alcohol just because our culture accepts alcohol as a norm. It is one thing to enjoy a cocktail, another to wake up with a hangover weekly.
She told me to care for my health when I am young, because as we get older, we will inevitably have health issues, but people who take precautions can stay healthy and youthful longer. She told me to love my knees.
She told me to try to surround myself with good people. She told me to value the importance of people who I could always count on and to make myself equally available.
She told me to make friends for who they are, not for what they can do for me. After all these years, she still has this light about her, and whenever we talk, I feel happier. She makes me feel like everything is going to be okay.
She told me love is not about finding the one—love is choosing to be with someone despite your differences and working together because you are a good team. She told me love is not about give and take—it may seem like you are giving more but, in the end, things always balance themselves out. She told me not to keep count of who does more.
She also told me it is that I will never be able to control what is happening around me, but it is completely up to me to control what is happening within me. She meant that how happy and unhappy I am depends completely on how I choose to see the world.
My best friend knows what is going on in my heart before I get a chance to tell her. I love her so much.