A good friend of mine is in town; she leaves first thing tomorrow morning. She left Nebraska over two years ago (her husband is in the military, and you go where you are needed) and we haven’t seen each other since the day we said, “see you later”.
When we were in our early 20’s, we became fast friends. But we also became fierce competitors. That’s what young age does to you. I don’t think either of us wanted to fight against each other, but we were both the youngest women in the office.
It was a love/hate relationship. We both loved each other so much, that we also wanted to kill each other. A perfect example (and a story often re-told in my circle of friends): A friend of ours had bought a picture frame, and inside that frame was one of those models doing some pose as a “pretend” photo for the frame. We all thought the model looked like me, so our friend decided to tape that picture to the chair I sat in when I was not working in the office on a particular day. One day, my love/hate friend decided to come at the pseudo picture of me with a pencil, and with rage she viciously poked the picture and created a large hole where the face had been.
Did I mention, it was a love/hate thing?
I was there for the birth of her children. She was there for the birth of my oldest son, Ben and was so sad to not be there for the birth of my youngest, Nolan.
And our two oldest became like brother and sister, inseparable.
The day she and her family left, was very hard for me. I’m not one to show emotion to other people, not when it comes to tears. I walked quickly out of her house after saying our “see you laters”, crying as I did so, because I didn’t want anyone to see me. Her husband chased after me with his oldest on his hip, stopping me, and I gave them both a hug and cried most of the way home. It felt like a large part of me was leaving.
My friends are like family to me. She is my family, and it’s wonderful having her here, with her husband and children in tow. It’s bittersweet, because I know after today, she’ll be gone again. But I’ve noticed that when you have a close friend like this, it’s a lasting bond that distance or time won’t disrupt. You know it’s a good thing when you are seperated after two years, or five, or ten… and it feels as though you just saw each other yesterday when you do see each other again, albeit the new wrinkles or the extra padding, or the crazy hectic lives you both lead. You just have to enjoy the time you have, because today might be the only time you have.