Thank you, for being the absolute stars that you are.
To the friends I’ve had since I was young enough to not understand friendship yet
It’s been closer to two decades since I’ve known you, and maybe I still don’t fully grasp the concept of friendship, not when there seems to be so many kinds of it. But at least I know I’m not alone. To the friends who’ve seen the wildest parts of my child self, running in the fields and not knowing of the world that exists beyond our doors, you were the shining points of my childhood that are scattered now in that same world, and I hope you get your shine, wherever you are.
To the friends I’ve made in my teens
The ones that are still in my orbit, even when I can’t always see them through life’s mundane ups and downs. We’ve been through puberty and terrible fashion choices together, and I wouldn’t have chosen anyone else to go with me through that disaster. I am forever grateful that we have managed to navigate adolescence with as much grace as we could muster, between insane class projects, hanging out on hot afternoons after school, to university and career choices made too early that might define the next fifty years of our lives.
To the friends I’ve discovered in young adulthood
You’ve shown me that friendships can occur without the bonding experience of being terrified six year-olds, because like it or not, we are still terrified, only we’re now in our mid-twenties and probably a little better at masking the fear. Thank you, for being there for me as we stressed about deadlines and last minute meetings, while holding on to our expensive lattes and Earl Greys past midnight as we hunched over our laptops together.
To the friends who have upped and left (to the friends I’ve upped and left)
There are days when it’s a lot easier to just not think of you. To bury memories of midnight conversations and ringing laughter underneath a veneer of “Yeah, I miss them but people change, you know?” and despite it all, I would not trade those moments for the world. You taught me that the opposite of love isn’t hate; it’s chilling indifference and I know, I am incorrigibly guilty of it as well. So you stay alive as characters of my past and all I can hope for is that I’ll be the same for you.
To those who came careening back into my atmosphere
Sometimes I still don’t understand what happened. Sometimes I wonder if this is okay, if we’re truly okay again, if it’s possible to move past misunderstandings and long silences and rage slipping past our lips. I look at you and I’m conflicted between suppressing my confusion and moving past the fact that closure doesn’t seem to be in our dictionary. But I suppose there’s a reason that infinite second chances exist. Thank you, for giving me this chance, again.
To the best friends (the very best of them)
To the ones who have seen me at my lowest and helped me to see my flaws as constellations in my dark personality; you are my constant cheerleaders and advice givers (even when the advice usually consists of variations of “You do you, girl”). Even when I’ve been more than marginally impossible to deal with, for some reason, you find it bizarrely entertaining instead of completely annoying. Thank you, for being the absolute stars that you are. There’s no one else I’d rather get lost with on cross country road trips together, trying to chase elusive sunsets.