Today I recieved a “friend request” through myfitnesspal.com; the newest tool I am using in my pursuit to drop 30 pound for the wedding. So far, I am down 15, and that is the most amount of weight I’ve lost without sticking a finger down my throat. If you’ve ever suffered from an eating disorder, you’ll know that’s a big deal. The friend request is from a former close friend that we’ll call Friend A. Although, if she ever happens to read this, she’ll know it’s her because I quoted her exactly as writing “Hey Tiff, its ***. Congrats on the wedding(unless ur just wearing the dress for fun, then nevermind) 😉👍”.
The “dress” she is referring to is a wedding dress that I tried on and fell in love with. However, my actual dress is being hand made by my mother in law to be. I posted the picture as an inspiration to lose weight. While admittedly I am probably would be the kind of person to try on a wedding dress “just for fun” this was in reality for my actual wedding next year. She would have known this if we were in fact still friends.
Here is the deal. Friend A and I were thick as thieves, we did everything together. We were out nearly every night when I was single drinking, dancing, flirting, talking all night. I was admittedly slightly jealous of Friend A because she was quite beautiful and quite thin. Thankfully, at this point my life I had gotten through the eating problems and was at a healthy weight, perhaps slightly over weight depending on your perspective. According to the doctor I was a solid healthy. Friend A was not only beautiful, but she had this great personality that intrigued me. She was that “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” kind of character that I wanted to be. I remember one time I asked her how to spell her name when we first met, I spelled it out completely in what I thought might be correct based on other spellings and she smiled quietly through the process. I looked up from my phone “is that right?” and she replied simply “not at all” and walked away. I like her instantly.
Unfortunately, I am a relationship kind of girl and it wasn’t long before I started seeing someone. Friend A on the other hand, is not terribly fond of conventional relationships and we gradually drifted when she moved to Northern California and I remained in Southern. My best friend happens to live in the same area, so I decided that I would make the trip to see them both. At this time, I had just exited my latest string of bad relationships and was once again single. Which is my world, meant free drinks. Ok, so I am kind of a bar whore, and I’ll admit it. Not in the sexual sense, but typically I’m not buying my own drinks or paying cover. I was one of those terribly mean girls that would let a guy buy me a drink and ditch him ASAP, it was actually a game we called “drink and ditch”. Yea, I was a bitch, what do you want from me?
Anywho, in a drunken state I suggested to my best friend and Friend A that we play this game to save the rest of our money for a cab ride. Even though, admittedly I had plenty of cab money. It made sense in my drunken logic. Totally reasonable drunk request, right? Friend A was less than enthusiastic about my bright idea and was more than enthusiastic to let me know this. She called me “desperate for attention”, “needy” and “pathetic”. Literally, these words came from my so called friends mouth. Here is why this was so bad. Number one, I am extremely independent. I’ve worked since I was 11 and paid my own rent since I was 16. I had just gotten out of an abusive relationship where I pressed charges and filed for a restraining order. So, I was feeling particularly powerful over men and in control of my own life for once. Needless to say, I did not take lightly to being called these things in my current state of mind.
I ended up walking in the rain for 30 minutes or so trying to get a cab while Friend A followed me continuing to berate me for my suggestion. Now, mind you, it’s not like had she said “no way! let’s buy our own drinks” that I would have pulled out an automatic and blown her head off for shooting down my intoxicated suggestion. I would have probably drunkenly agreed that was the better idea. It’s not the first time I’ve made a half hearted stupid suggestion in a drunken stupor, Friend A would normally laugh them off. One time I suggested a dance party in the bathroom since the dance floor was too crowded, that one she liked. So, I had yet another friend that lived in Oakland and I decided I wanted so much to get away from these terrible words that I would take a cab from downtown San Francisco to Oakland. If you’re unfamiliar with the area, it’s a long freaking way.
Finally, a cab pulls over and I am in tears while Friend A is still yelling at me I climb into the back of the cab. My friends attempt to reason with the driver saying I was drunk and that “she doesn’t know what she’s doing”. The cab driver padded my knee and closed the door in their face. I felt a little bad for leaving my friends in that state, but I thought if I stayed I might not make it out alive. I’d been through so much in my last relationship and with all the court dates that followed, I just had wanted to blow off some steam with my friends. The cab ride was quiet for the first 14 minutes before the driver finally asked if I was OK. Of course, being tipsy and totally emotionally distraught I burst into tears and told him my life story.
The meter read $85 at this point and we were only halfway to my destination. At the time I had a decent job, but not great enough to blow $170 on a cab ride plus a tip for the poor driver. It was around 2:00am, which is prime time to make cash in downtown on a weekend for a cab driver. I’d made the decision so, I’d pay it and deal with the consequences later. Here I am sobbing to a complete stranger about how terrible things had gotten in my life and not knowing how to make anything better. The cab driver reached up and turned off the meter. I immediately thought, “great, worst night ever now I’m going to get raped”.
Pulling over to the side of the road the cab came to an abrupt stop. The cabby said “where those girls your friends?” I replied with meek but matter of fact “yes”. He frowns and says “do you know that life is a series of choices? We can choose our friends, and we can choose to forget them when they act like that”. Sadly, I had not pondered this simple concept believe it or not. I’d been so wrapped up in being the victim over and over that it had not occurred to me that I was making that choice. He continued “you could choose to get out of this cab and walk, to think that I am a crazy man and not listen to a word. You could choose to take something from a strangers advice, but the point is everyday you choose to be just where you are, so now you need to know, where do you want to be?” He turned the car back on and continued to my destination. When we pulled up to my friends house she greeted me with a bottled water and a blanket, she thanked the cabby and asked how much the charge was. He told her that he was already on his way home and that it was no problem to give me a free lift. He said “I have daughters, I hope someone does the same for them one day.” I gave him what I had in my pocket, which happen to be $100 bill. It wouldn’t cover the cab ride and it wouldn’t cover his advice, but it was all I had. He said “thank you for your kindness but, this is too much.” The cab driver who gave me a free ride worth more than I handed him said it was too much.
Granted I was a bit drunk, but I said “you changed my life” and he smiled and said “you changed mine too.” Then he drove away and I never saw him again, but I never forgot the simplicity of his philosophy. After that, I chose not to speak to Friend A again, she continued reaching out on social media with terrible remarks hoping for a rise, but I did not sway. This simple message that I received with her friend request recently, “Hey Tiff, its ***. Congrats on the wedding(unless ur just wearing the dress for fun, then nevermind)” , is the first time I’ve heard from her in nearly two years. I chose not to reply.