Dear ex best friend,

I’d always heard that people drift as they get older; I never thought it would happen to us. That’s the funny thing about authentic friendship I guess: you always expect it to be permanent. We were the type of friends who never got tired of each other—we’d see each other all day in school and then go home and talk for ages.

You’d bike the mile or so from your house just to hang out on my porch for a couple of hours or we’d meet up just to walk aimlessly around the neighborhood. Our inside jokes made absolutely no sense to anyone else.

We told each other everything; sometimes I swore you knew me better than I did. You’ve seen me at my best…and at my worst. You helped me through some of the toughest years of my life; we always pushed each other to try a little bit harder.

We just got each other.

Flash forward a few years and things got…complicated. It’s difficult to pinpoint when it started or why, but suddenly we weren’t talking as much. We both made new friends, developed new interests…you started dating. Having a guy for my best friend had never been an issue before; it was strange adjusting to you having another girl in your life. Eventually, I started ‘talking’ to someone else too (god, I hate that term). I’ll admit I didn’t handle it super well, but neither did you; jealousy had reared her ugly head and shredded the last remaining fibers of our relationship.

It wasn’t long before I became acutely aware of the fact that I had lost you; gone were our monthly movie trips and late-night chats. Here to stay were thoughts of regret and awkward encounters in the hallway at school.

We’re different people now; I don’t know what you’re doing every day or what manuscript you’re currently writing or if your favorite color is still red.

I do know that you’re a truly, deeply, genuinely good person. I know that you’ve never tried to be anyone other than yourself and that you can always be counted on to crack a joke when the going gets tough. I know that you taught me more about friendship in a few years than anyone else has all my life.

I don’t regret being your friend. To this day, you are still the most supportive and understanding person I’ve ever met. I still have all the handwritten notes you gave me stowed away in my room at home. I like knowing I can take them out and reread them--that our friendship still exists out there in the universe somewhere.

And who knows? Maybe we’ll reconnect in the future. I like to think that one day when we’re older we’ll sit down on that old porch swing and tell each other about all the exciting things that have happened in our lives.

And if we don’t? I hope you’re happy, really. Just because our friendship didn’t last forever doesn’t mean it wasn’t worth anything.

Much love and gratitude,

Your ex best friend