By Laniah

She had always been too much for me. She wore a radiant face on mornings when the air was sullen. Her kindness was too loud: she’d smile too much, almost painfully so, and said “don’t worry about it” until it lost its meaning. What had been the most excessive about her was her intelligence. She always knew the answer to every question and the right questions to ask.

This bothered me: I had been that enviable once and I wanted to be that way again. I wanted to be too much again.

But, one day, I shifted just a few millimetres left and I realised that I had been looking at her wrong. She had never been too much. She was pastel and mild. She was not to be envied but to be admired. I had never wanted to be like her.

The whole time, I had wanted her.

Laniah (she/her) is an 18-year-old medical student from the UK. She writes creative non-fiction, short stories and occasionally, poetry. Besides writing and studying for her degree, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, organising her Spotify playlists and obsessing over small events in her life so she has something to write about. You can find her on Twitter @laniahhj.