Music truly is the soundtrack of my life – and Fantasia’s new single “No Time For It” just gave me the clarity and closure I’ve been seeking about an ex-friend.
Last summer I ended a trial friendship with a woman who I decided I just didn’t want to interact with anymore. I met her the previous fall one morning as we were both buying our morning coffees, and I honestly was surprised that she opened up her mouth to speak to me on that particular day. On other mornings I’d spotted her on the Metro North platform and attempted to make eye contact, exchange a friendly morning greeting, offer a compliment from one woman to another. But she was just not receptive, and after a few failed attempts I made a mental note – “not friendly, don’t bother”- and kept it moving.
Our brief friendship came into being unexpectedly, intensely, and with its fair share of problems pretty much at the start. I found out soon enough that my ex-friend thought very highly of herself, but this confidence bordered on arrogance and afforded her false entitlement of demean and diminish others, including me. She had an uncanny way of making me feel lesser than, and I found myself questioning who I was and feeling “small” and “little” whenever I was around her. I would go out of my way to pacify and please her, showering her with compliments in an attempt to preempt an attack, or silencing myself in order to avoid conflict. Others in my circle who came into contact with her didn’t like her, and questioned why I would choose to befriend someone such as her. They saw an arrogant, pretentious, obnoxious woman, whereas my gut-felt perception of her was overshadowed by those things I thought she had, and that I lacked and longed for – confidence, connections, style and swagger, a no-nonsense approach to attaining what she wanted out of life. I struggled with our friendship for several months and could not escape the fact that when I spent time with her, I felt bad about myself, and I was unhappy. And her bad treatment was not just for me – I witnessed her snap at strangers, talk down to others, and complain about people virtually every time we were together. But I kept hoping that she would allow other parts of her personality to shine, and give me a good reason to call her a friend.
I ultimately ended the friendship abruptly one night when we went dancing and a silly comment I made served as justification for her to go off on me in public. A guy who we’d been eyeing on the dance floor with his impressive salsa and meringue moves came up to her and asked her to dance. I jokingly said, “Go head girl, he picked you because you look like you can dance this the best out of the three of us!” She was constantly bringing up her bi-racial background and so I took that moment to tease her about the fact that she could pass for Latina. She snapped and hissed back, “That is the most ignorant and ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard! You don’t know your history and you need to go educate yourself!” At that moment it hit me – I didn’t like this woman! I realized that if the relationship wasn’t fueling me or feeding me in a positive way, I could walk away from it! And that night, that’s just what I did. We didn’t talk, I didn’t text, and I didn’t look back. I just deleted her number from my phone and blocked her. Done!
Because we both live in the same town it’s a bit awkward when I see her some mornings on the Metro North platform, but I just remember that feeling of embarrassment and humiliation that swept over me that evening, and I redirect myself mentally to the space that doesn’t allow for people to make me feel bad about me! Anyone who makes me feel small, inferior, or insecure is not someone I need to be around – I’ve got no time for it! If you have someone in your life who makes you feel these things, take some time to consider why you allow them to do this. Then realize that you are in control of how you feel and who you choose to associate with, so you don’t have to suffer. Should I come across another foul female like my ex-friend I know just the song to play to give me the proper perspective and bring me back to my phenomenally fabulous self.