It’s Sunday morning, the sky is a wet, saturated gray and the wind haphazardly rattles the windows. I pour myself a coffee, black, and think of last night’s minor disruption in my weekly routine.
I got a text from an old friend, one I haven’t spoken to in a couple years. She said something about a picture my brother posted, aka my heart, who suddenly grew from a little blonde peanut to a sixteen year old, car driving, money making, girl chasing young man. Her comment made me realize we went from talking everyday to silence, from a place where our lives were actively intertwined to strangers, nostalgia was the last nail in the friendship coffin.
We were attached in high school, connected by what we were sure was a cosmic magnetism that promised forevers. There weren’t many people in that town who understood people like us, our heads and hearts were singing the same songs and we wanted more than what was offered to us. The fact that we had both been out of the small town that suffocated and isolated us and our peers made us stronger, we knew there was a world outside of the bubble and our hunger made us strive to get out. Her ambition to achieve greatness inspired greatness in me, and I forever needed her around me to keep me motivated.
Then we moved away for school, coincidentally not too far from each other. Easy to meet up and hang out, right? But something changed. Our mutual adventures turned into solo missions, self discoveries led us out of each other’s arms and into a vast, wide world full of other people and other experiences that were ours for the taking. The noise of our new lives distracted us from making our relationship a priority. Exposure to new people, new novelties, new new new...it just overshadowed the old and wedged itself between us.
Growing up and growing out
Sometimes there’s no explanation other than we grew out of each other. The paths of our lives took different turns, and there was no place for each other in our new lives. Now it seems too late to say sorry, too late to say anything really. Now it’s become awkward, ingrained with regret on my part for not extending enough effort into cultivating relationships. I tend to panic and go ghost when I’m confused and not sure how to handle certain situations.
I want you to know; you carved your life into my past and that’s where you’ll stay for now at least, perfectly preserved. You helped build the person I am today, and maybe we had to separate to grow and we'll meet again in the future, two different people who can learn even more from each other.
I will always value your friendship and the ways in which you guided me through the perils of adolescence. High School is a blur of confused insecurities, inadequacies, hierarchy, and a complete lack of self. We needed each other, we grounded each other. I'm sorry we never said goodbye, but if you ever need me, I am here.
You are alive and dynamic.
It’s important to reflect upon the people who painted their souls into the eras of our lives, I know we’ve all had relationships that we’ve simply drifted from, with no bad blood or hurt, just plain growth. Sometimes those losses hurt more because there's no explanation, no blame we can cling to as a false sense of reason or closure. We need to remember that we are dynamic, forever-changing and growing. I’m not the same person I was 5 years ago, and 5 years from now I’ll be an entirely new person again. It’s the most exciting part of living, the inevitability of growth, the endless possibilities of truths.
I'm grateful for the friends I had at certain stages of my life because they really did help me grow, and if they were meant to stay by my side longer, they would have. No one owes me their presence, everyone is free to come and go as they please. In order to move forward we have to look at the past as moments that have added up to our growth, the people we are today, this very moment in time. We will forever be growing and changing and people will pop into our lives at any given time to guide our journeys. They will disappear just as quickly and that's ok, take what you learned from them and make yourself a better person. There's no shame in growth, it only means you're living.