Today I loose a friend. Someone i’ve known for 7 years. She started off bullying me – why wouldn’t you: I was the Christian kid in the class with shoe-shine so bright my feet became their own sun. I was the child who was always polite, conscientious, maybe anal – and I thought she was incredible. She was so smart, so cool, aloof, mature, and so sure of herself. I really wanted to be her friend. I tried to make up nicknames for her – it didn’t go down too well. I tried to hang out with her – another fail. But for some reason I could only ever see how cool she was, how much I wanted to be her friend, and for her to be mine. Perhaps I was deluded, but for some reason within that delusion I saw her.
And then something happened. I got an email. It was slightly threatening – I’m still forbidden to reveal the contents (sworn promise of two 14 year olds, you can never break those). But she had an experience, an encounter one summer holiday, and I was the first person she shared it with. It was one of the greatest moments of my life. It told me I was important, deep, deep, deep down where only a macro-microscope can go, deep where it really counts, I was important. And from there our awkward friendship began.
We’ve never been close in the typical way. We don’t even hug – personal space issues and all…but she has been my truest friend. That bluntness that I thought was so cool, it hurt sometimes, but it was an unflinching honesty that was what I needed.
Today we hugged and said goodbye. She’s off to another continent, and on my way home it hit me. Growing up is growing apart. I don’t even know where she’ll be when her birthday rolls round 3 days after mine…
She’s still one of the coolest people I know. If she reads this she’ll just cringe in embarrassment, potentially disown me forever. Yet what do you say. Growing up is growing apart. That’s what it means to become an adult. Yet…I think i’m afraid that as the days pass, and essays and job-hunting waylay our paths those memories might start to pixilate and fade until one day, decades from now, we might meet again and wonder what happened?
Then again the journey was incredible, she’s still cool and I get to say she’s my friend.
Goodbye the past 7 years, hello tomorrow…and thank you.