Alright, fuck it, I do need them.
I need my mom like I need an arm or a leg or a heart. Like I need oxygen. I could list all the myriad ways in which I need her, but that’s a list with no end, so instead I’ll just tell you that she is everything you could want in a mother, or a woman, or a human–and how could you not need someone like that?
I need my best friend, though it keeps me from needing others, because how could men compare to a love like this? I need my best friend who once answered the phone and without me asking, or really saying much at all, but having heard that faint tremble in my voice, was at my front door in minutes. Who drove me around for hours, like how you might pacify a small child, all the way out to a grocery store in the suburbs with that gross candy beer I love–and let me drink and rant without an ounce of judgement. I need my best friend who taught me what it is to be a friend, who continues to teach me again and again. My best friend who sometimes doesn’t know the power of her own goodness, though it burns in her like something nuclear and could power a whole city grid.
I need my twin–my baking, beer drinking, beach going, mirror image. My partner in crime on boats and in bars, in dank frat house rooms one summer, sticky with beer and sweat (my god, what were we thinking?). I need our constant refrain of me, too–I’m depressed. Me too. I need a midnight swim. Me too. I just baked three loaves of bread. Me too–because being on the same word of the same sentence of the same page is not something to be taken for granted. I need my twin at my side in a Frank Lloyd Wright house on the west side late at night, hiding and seeking in the basement with a bottle of rum, overcome with our good fortune. Because who else could understand a miracle like that?
I need my friend, wonderful and wise, who taught me how to settle down without settling one bit. My friend with the new husband and the new house and the new job and that same old grace and spunk from when we were kids. I need my friend who paired a white lace dress with electric blue nails and hot pink kicks. My friend with that soft core of compassion and that hard armor of not taking shit.
And I even needed that guy I met climbing at the gym. We spent a winter swapping playlists and spit. Burnt CDs and carpet burns don’t count for much, but thanks for all that beer you left in my fridge. And for that one night in July, in my attic apartment with no AC, soaking in the tub with a six pack and the new Chance on repeat. In the end I didn’t need him so much, but I needed that experience.
Yeah, I admit it, I do need them. And I’m damn lucky for these humans–my humans. So here’s to the good ones, and to gratitude for their love and compassion and wit–and to misanthropy, still, but only just a little bit.