I’ve always been social but I never knew how to make a true friend until my mid-twenties.
Jess is my best friend.
I truly believe we were destined to meet. 12 years ago, on the first day I arrived at the UCLA dorm, people kept coming up to me and said, “Omg you look like Jessica!.” I thought, “Who is this Jessica girl?!”
Jessica was always very different from me. She was sensitive and liked corny things. I made fun of her because of it.
She always tried to be close to me. This made me uncomfortable. I kept her at a familiar distance. We went through all the motions of being BFFs but there was an unspoken wall. Things were just how they were. Shrug. I didn’t like the deep stuff.
5 years later, my life hit a pivotal changing point. She said 7 words to me.
I don’t remember exactly what caused her to say this but I’ll never forget it. She looked at me with her big brown eyes that usually have a “ding!” sparkle, except this time they were clearly upset. Upset at me. She said, “You’re being stingy with your love…”
You. Are. Being. Stingy. With. Your. Love.
The words turned on the gadgets in my brain. This is why I have all the relationships that I do. I didn’t know how to truly give and receive love because I didn’t know how to be vulnerable.
It was a pattern I had since I was a kid – something I never understood. I knew I wanted close relationships; I just didn’t have anyone to teach me what it meant to be emotionally intelligent, open up, and co-create something.
When I had “the” talk with Jess she said, “For all these years I wondered why you wouldn’t open up to me, but (playful smile on her face)… I knew I wasn’t going to give up on you.”
This is the biggest lesson I’ve ever learned. It’s because of Jess that I know how to have the kind of relationships that make life beautiful. You get what you give. I never want to be stingy with my love.