Tonight, as I was wallowing in self-pity due to my impending cold, I did what any respectable New Yorker would do and wasted hours of meaningless time on the internet. I Pinterested, Facebooked and Youtubed my night away successfully when I came across the video to Adele’s “Someone Like You.” As usual, I had to listen to this incredibly perfect song about 10 times before I moved on to Googling about the British superstar. I know, you hate where this story is going since I obviously went nowhere but the kitchen, but I promise, I have a point to make.

While I was lost in the abyss known as Google search results, I found an article on titled “Adele forgives the Ex- Boyfriend who inspired ’21.”  In the article, the artist was quoted saying “Now with what’s going on with the album around the world, it’s important to be able to share it with him… because it’s marvelous what has happened. He changed my life, I can’t deny that.”

For some reason, this made me think of so many things from past friends and lovers to certain people I really should move on from, but strangely find the toxicity of their influence addictive. Where can I find a patch to wean myself away from those people? Anyways, my thoughts on past relationships have changed drastically over the past year, and I came to the realization, or decision if you choose to take it that way, that some people are only meant to have chapters in the book of your life, and they, while significantly important to your overall character development, aren’t always meant to stay with you until the end.

I look at this way now, in the beginning of your life story, you are given the basic foundations of you. It is said that we are who we are from the time we are about six years old on, and the rest is what we build on top of that. Now, unlike most people, I can actually trace my friendships back to when I was three years old. I remember my closest friends were Carol, Thomas ( siblings from Texas) and Marissa. Our dads were in the same army unit, so we actually had to spend a lot time together. Now, Carol and Thomas are perfect examples of a chapter in my life that finished pretty early, but I needed Carol and Thomas to develop various social skills like when I realized that my mom didn’t necessarily want me playing with Carol’s Barbies. Now, Marissa on the other hand is a figure in my life who, to my delight, keeps recurring. Our families lived about 200 miles from each other after our parents’ respective military tours ended, so I actually got to see Marissa quite a bit growing up. We experienced many things together like, what our families now humorously refer to as “The Thanksgiving from Hell”, her excitement over her first kiss at 14 in her school library, to one Fourth of July when she drove a Model A through a parade while I sat in the back waving to the crowd wearing a bear costume. Though my experiences with her have been sporadic, I will never degrade their importance. She now lives about 80 miles away in Connecticut and I do plan on seeing her soon. The familiarity of having known someone for 21 years is pretty awesome.

Fast forward to high school/ early college when you REALLY think that friends are forever and you don’t really take your mother’s “I’ll be here longer than Sarah!” comments seriously. Well, Mom was right, but I can say that I’m glad for the time I did have with those friends who helped me to overcome some pretty difficult adolescent “traumas” as I like to call them. I can count on one hand the friendships that I’ve solidly maintained since I graduated, and those are the people I have grown to count as family, but when I look closely at those friendships, I realize that they are the people I’ve truly learned the most from.

That’s just it though, some people are meant to come into your life for a reason, and sometimes, they aren’t meant to go with you through the next chapter, and for some of us, this realization can be difficult. You wonder what you did wrong, why doesn’t this person like or love me back? Or how can I fix something that is either shattered or didn’t ever really work in the first place? Well, the answer is, you can’t. Sometimes those relationships were mutually beneficial simply to get the both of you beyond the slump you were in, and on the other side of the hill were two different roads.

And such is life, I truly feel that every experience I’ve gone through is a lesson learned, and if looked at any other way is simply self-pity. And no one likes a pity party… even Ben and Jerry.