Letter From a Friend

There it was, sitting atop the stack of mail my husband had piled on the kitchen table. The familiar comfort with which I recalled her didn't ease the tension that settled in my jaw and shoulders the second I saw it: The letter from a friend I hadn't talked to in a long time. Too long. The shame of not keeping in touch with my pal burned hot in my cheeks. I swallowed the lump in my throat and slowly slit the envelope open...

Dear Stephanie,

I've been thinking about us a lot lately. Whatever happened to us?

Remember all the good times we had in college?! We were so tight! Sleep was fleeting and classes were tough, but we worked together and accomplished so much. We graduated with a degree and true love. And confidence. So much confidence. The moment was rare when we second-guessed ourselves, let alone our relationship. In a time of much change and uncertainty, we were the constant.

Ohmygoodness -- how about your wedding day?! You didn't see you the way I did: strong, capable, sure. You looked so beautiful in your gown, and while I don't want to take away from your special day, I would be remiss if I didn't admit I wish you had been prouder of our relationship at that point. We reveled in the magic of the day together, but I think it was shortly afterward when you began to take me for granted. We were incredibly fortunate to have made it that far together, with no outsiders butting in or interfering, but one of us never realized it.

I supported you through your pregnancies. I was strong for deliveries. I was patient during recoveries. It seemed like the more I gave, the less you appreciated it! Even now, as your children grow and physically need you less, have you even thought about returning to our roots? Look around you: what we have is rare and it won't last forever. If you don't start making me a priority, I promise you will regret it.

Some days it's like you don't care about me at all...

I can't remember when we last spent quality time together. I know you're busy, but I've always been there for you; is it so wrong to want some reciprocity? I feel I've earned it, and I know I damn well deserve it.

Oh, and I heard what your son said.

You didn't think I caught it, did you? Muffled under his napkin at the dinner table.

Mom's fat.

I don't blame him, though; I blame you. Little ears hang on to every word, and you're constantly disrespecting me, so how can I possibly blame a 3-year-old for repeating the words he hears every day? You teach your kids to speak kind words to one another; what about to themselves?! Start setting an example now or you're going to raise children who look for flaws instead of beauty. Ugly insides are far worse than a little junk in the trunk, don't you agree?

If you're that upset with the way you look, let's start working out together again! Why not jump on the treadmill? Use that spinner for something other than hanging wet towels! The ball is in your court. I'll be waiting, as usual.

Lay off the ice cream,

Your Body

This post was originally published on Stephanie Jankowski's blog When Crazy Meets Exhaustion. Connect with her on Facebook and Twitter.