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Friends

You lose friends. They move away, you grow apart, or they stop calling. Sometimes a friend leaves you, and they don’t tell you why. It’s not a big deal. The friend that moved away asks you to visit. Your mom packs a bag and flies with you to another state. You go to her birthday party. You spend the weekend in a fancy hotel suite that her dad gave you at a low rate. As it starts to snow, you say goodbye. You didn’t think it would be that last time you would see each other. Years later, you get your first Facebook account. She happens to have one, too. You add each other and communicate online. Things aren’t the same, but it was nice to see that she was doing well. She is living her best life. She made new friends. Everything is good. Friends move away, and friends grow apart. The friend you found was talking about you behind your back shows their true colors. The lies and the truth came out. You tell them to leave you alone and they don’t listen. They bombard you by saying it’s not true. You are their world. Yet, they still hold on to those bad habits. One day, a teacher finds out you aren't friends. The teacher pulls you into the hall. You sit there in silence. The teacher forces you to make up. You agree to be her friend, but you won’t invite her over again. You won’t trust her again. Instead, you hang on to someone else. When you grow up, you won't talk anymore. She is a distant memory that finds its way back. But, it’s okay now. You have forgiven her, and she has learned from her mistakes. You learned from yours. The girl that hated you becomes your best friend. You had been friends with her before, but you weren't this close. You text each other all the time. You hang out on weekends. She moves away, but you still keep in touch. In high school, she comes back to you. You ride the bus together. You have sleepovers. You sit to watch videos on YouTube. She is incredibly smart. She is a good person to talk to. She makes you forget everything else. She makes you laugh. You have some amazing memories. When she moves away again, you keep in touch. But, not as much as you did before. Eventually, you stop talking. It’s not a big deal. She is busy and you are too. You found solace in another friend. When you run into each other, you talk. Your relationship is not the same. You give her your number to make sure she has it. She doesn’t call. You ask her to hang out on Facebook since you don’t have her number, but she doesn’t respond. It’s fine. She is busy. You don’t need her, but you want her around. It’s not a big deal. You have a lot of friends in middle school. There is the girl you’ve been friends with since you were babies. Don't forget the girl who was friends with you in elementary school. The girl who will become your temporary best friend was pretty cool. There is also the girl who becomes your bully, the girl whose older brother is nicer, and others. The others were pretty great. Even the boys were great. They were friends that you were always happy to see. You would hug them and wish them well, even now. You guys have sleepovers, parties, and every school event had your name written on it. Your temporary best friend is the best. You text all the time. You hang out every weekend. She even took you on a birthday trip out of town. She is awesome. She is also one of the most popular girls in your school. She dates the cool guys and you are her best friend. You get to hang out with the cool guys. Eventually, she makes other friends. You two stop talking. You're in high school now, and you run in different circles. You don’t talk anymore, but you don’t hate each other. When you see each other you smile and say hello. That’s it. You run into her in college, and catch up like old times. She’s different, but she is doing great. You’re proud of how successful she is. She didn’t like showing how smart she was back then, but now she revels in it. You’re so happy she has grown into the person she was meant to be. The girl who becomes your bully is irrelevant. This is about your long lost friends, not the ones who pretended to like you. Not about the girl whose brother was nicer. Not about the girl you worked with. This isn’t about every person you talked to or liked.  This is about the people you loved. You would want to call them and ask them about their day. If you saw them you would be so happy. They changed you for the better, and the thought of them brings back the happiest memories. Not your teammates, not your fellow choir students, not the boys you talked to, and definitely not the people who were barely your friends. The girl you were friends with in elementary school will always pop up. You had some science classes with her in high school. She is cool. You even ran into her at your friend from across the street’s 21st birthday party. You love her to death. If you could call her up to take her to coffee you would, but you’re afraid she doesn’t consider you that good of a friend. Like the girl from across the street. You're afraid you left them alone for too long. You have social anxiety. You wouldn't want to be a burden on them. Now, it is too late. They were both there for you when you wanted to die. When you stayed at home in middle school because you were embarrassed to come to school. When you wanted to move to a different school. When you begged your mom to keep you at home. All those things the girls said were true. You were fat, ugly, and you didn’t have any friends. No one would ever like you. But, the girl from across the street and the girl you went to elementary school with stood by you and helped unmask the phonies. They believed you. They lifted you up. They were your friends when you thought you didn't have any. You tried your best to lift them up but had other things to do. That boy you found solace in needed you. Your teammates who weren’t your friends needed you. The friends who didn’t stick around long needed you. You needed you. You wish things were different and that you could apologize. You waited too long. Friends grow apart, and that’s okay. When you see both of them you smile and say hi. After all, they must like you if they still comment on your stuff and invite you to parties. It’s fine. Besides, they are busy now. They got better, and need to be happy. You wouldn’t want to be a burden. Then, there is your best friend. She is amazing. You guys were always friends, but not like now. You’ve known each other for a long time and were close when the girl who moved away left. You even went to your first school dance together in middle school. For some reason, you bond in class and it never shakes. She is there for you after the big mess and the boy who helped you left. She makes up for the friends you lost, and the people who hurt you. She makes you laugh. You could text her right now, and she would be there for you. Like you were there for her. Friends leave both of you. Even the friend you’ve known since you were a baby. In fact, she is the reason most of your friends leave you. Like the girl whose mom was cool, but then turned out to be kind of irresponsible. It’s nothing against you. Not until the girl whose mom was cool dissed you while you were working in the mall. Not until the girl you’ve been friends with since you were a baby ignores you. It’s fine. Friends do things they’re not proud of. You will remember the good times instead of the broken pieces. If you see them, you’ll try to be nice, but not too nice. Even your best friend will try her best. But, she is stubborn. You may have to remind her that you both are better off. She has her own place and a dog. She even goes out for drinks with you. Sometimes you are scared to hang out with her. You're afraid to ask her to hang out with you because of your anxiety and your depression. She understands. It’s not a big deal. You let her know and she encourages you. She is your best friend. Even if you do move away, you’ll still text and hang out. She’ll come to visit you, and you will visit her when you are back in town. She is your best friend. She won’t become lost to you. She won’t leave you. When things get tough, she won’t turn away. She is your best friend. You will never be able to repay her for it. Remember to try your best with her. After all, she has stayed with you all this time.




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