Thursday, July 18, 2013


My friend Barb's birthday is mid-June and we just now got around to celebrating it. We had a delicious La Cantina, and they were nice enough to bring us a celebratory slice of cake.

Barb, a most indulgent dog owner, listened with sympathy and amusement as I brought her up to date on the travails of Reynaldo. And we gossiped a bit about our former coworkers.

So why aren't I happier? She's a good friend to me and she had good news …

•  She and her husband went on vacation to Hilton Head … and came home with a condo. They bought a 2BR condo where they will spend long weekends and holidays, and where they'll probably retire in the next few years. It's furnished and they paid cash for it. Now she has two homes that are nicer than where I live now. And I'm broke and scared.

•  She's planning a vacation to France. She's so excited because before she married John seven years ago, he had no interest in doing anything on vacation but camping and fishing along Illinois' Chain o' Lakes.

•  She bought the next series of theater tickets for us and I owe her more than $250. It's a great deal and she doesn't expect repayment right away. But ... it's another expense I hadn't budgeted.

I told her about how I expect to be let go next month and asked her if she could give me freelance year-end. She told me that she can't imagine my agency will let me go and that she'll "see what she can do." I had hoped for a more enthusiastic response. I know she'll help me out if she can, but I wanted an "of course, Gal!" And I didn't get it. There are no sure things in this industry, I know. But it would have been nice to hear.

I feel like a bad friend that I'm not able to just enjoy her happiness. I know it's silly and counter productive to compare my life to hers. In fact, at one point, I said to Barb, "Can we just take a moment to bask in how cool your life is right now?" I believe it intellectually. But in my heart, I'm scared.


  1. I have typed and deleted about four different responses. What I want to say is that you are not a bad friend.

  2. i agree with Kwizgiver, you are not a bad friend.
    I too suffer with the "i want that life" syndrome!
    all of my friends are retired...i still have to work but some days it is hard not to be jealous and say "why me Lord, why me?"
    so see...i too wonder about me.


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