The Break Up: An Ode to my Best Friend

I am wary of the term “best friend.” Too often it is tossed around as if it is hollow, as if to be a best friend is not concrete and turmoil, as if to have a best friend is not paperweight and tragedy.

    Nonetheless, I am one. Nonetheless, I have one.

    My best friend is a Colombo-Dominican Queen who has seen the parts of me that I prefer to keep hidden, has been subject to the deepest, darkest aspects of my character, has experienced me at my worst and has stood proudly with me at my best. (I wrote this line a few weeks ago as the opener of a scholarship essay, and she loved it, so I will reuse it here.)

    I like to think that to her, I am rainbow after storm; I am bedtime after long day; I am cuddle session after lonely. I like to think that for her, I am all of these things all of the time, but that simply is not true. That simply is not possible, though I often wish beyond reason that it could be.


    I am sorry if I have not been the color that you’ve needed since he broke up with you. I am sorry if my frames have boxed you in, if I have been too springy when you’ve needed plush, if I have not molded to fit your form. Most of all, I am sorry that I haven’t been there to disrupt your lonely.

    But I love you.

    I would tie up that line by adding “… and he does too,” but the truth is that I do not care if he loves you (I know that he does—who doesn’t?). I do not care that one day he will be forced from his world of oblivion and youth and bliss and he will realize that he let you get away (that he pushed you away). I do not care if he still harbors hope for the two of you (that seems to be his way of trapping you, of holding you back from moving on) or if he does not want to see you cry or if he still thinks that you are beautiful (you are more than beautiful, you are ocean and you are sky and you are light).

    He hurt you. You gave him your light and he dimmed you. You FaceTimed me and you cried, and I thoroughly weighed the consequences of egging his house or keying his car or bruising his skin or sending him a strongly worded message (I reached the conclusion that the consequences would be too great, so I did not act upon these wishes).

    A man who is worthy of you will not leave you unhappy. A man who is worthy of you will not leave. Period. I don’t care what all of those corny Instagram posts say; love is not supposed to hurt. Not like that. Love is not supposed to break you. A man who is worthy of you is not supposed to break you.

    When I began this piece, I thought it was going to be a nicely woven reflection regarding your current situation (the break up) and the odd juxtapositions of loving hard (you) and trying not to love at all (me), of fully feeling everything all at once (you) and trying (and failing) to always feel nothing, to never feel anything (me). But the piece turned out to be all about you, and I think that counts for something.

    It's all about you, my Queen.

    You have never needed him. Live your life and love your life and I will be here, trying my best to be your rainbow when you need it. You have always been mine.


Nonnie Egbuna