My husband isn’t my soulmate — my friends are

It’s 1p.m. on a Tuesday and my husband’s asleep. Not because he’s lazy, but because he’s a paramedic and works the night shift. I have that itch again, the one where I need to do something dramatic and impulsive. Normally this involves either cutting or dying my own hair, but since it’s one of those rare moments in a freelancer’s life where I have some cushion in the bank, I get in the car and go.

I’m sitting at an incredibly long stoplight and the sudden What do I tell the hairdresser!? panic comes over me. While the light is still red, I send out the same quick text message to my three closest friends: Chocolate, highlights, and/or pixie!?

There are three people I’ll trust with life and death decisions like whether or not I should get highlights and whether or not getting a pixie cut (again) is a good idea. They’re also the same people who’ve read terrible first drafts of my book and have listened to me have meltdowns over grad school. They’re the people I set up Skype dates with on Friday nights with and the people who I text at 3a.m. when I know it’s only midnight in Seattle and I need someone to tell me to stop working. Being married hasn’t changed my dynamic with my friends at all. In fact, it’s made my friendships even stronger.

There’s this supposed unspoken rivalry between married and single women — at least that’s what movies and T.V. shows like to tell us. The idea is that we can’t get along, can’t be friends, single women just don’t understand what it’s like to be married, and married women don’t remember being single. Maybe I’ve been doing the whole marriage thing wrong for five years, or maybe it’s because only one of my close friends is married, that I find this idea frustrating as hell.

Those same television shows tell me that our lives are supposed to revolve completely around our husbands, and that they must be our number one priority. So what if a friend needs us, dinner has to get on the table!

The thing is, that’s not how it works in my world. Not at all.

Maybe it’s because of the way my husband’s work schedule is, or maybe it’s because we’re two independent people, but my friends have, for the most part, come first in my life. Single or not, I always pick up their phone calls and answer their texts. I’m there for them as much as I can be, because they’re always there for me. I fly out to visit them for long weekends and take the occasional morning off to grab brunch. The bottom line is, my martial status doesn’t determine whether or not I ignore nearly a decade of friendships.

I love my husband, I really do. I think we’re a great fit together and he’s one of my best and oldest friends. But he’s not my soulmate. My friends are.Nicole Tone is a 26-year-old living the married MFA student life in Buffalo, NY. She’s a writer, a self-proclaimed coffee snob, book reviewer, and freelance editor. You can follow her stress about being a debut author on her website, Twitter, Facebook page, and Instagram

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