People come and go in your life, and that’s the way it’s meant to be.
I used to be scared of letting people in my life, of getting too close to them, knowing that one day they would leave my side. It always felt like I was the one being left behind, left to mend the loss that only I seemed to experience.
In high school, I saw this happen to me almost every year. My best friend since sixth grade left freshman year. I then got close to another friend, whom left the following year. I got close to yet another friend, but she too left. I got close to a friend outside school, but when she left for college I knew that we weren’t going to stay connected. It seemed like each time I found someone I could talk to, they would leave. At this point in time at my school, I pretty much knew everyone and understood that I wasn’t bound to get closer to a lot of them. Don’t get me wrong – I liked most people at my school, but I wasn’t close to most of them. It felt like the older I got, the harder it was to connect with the same people I had known since primary school. Maybe it was a fact of being in the same environment with the same people you have grown up with, or maybe it was just me.
Every time someone I considered a close friend would leave my side, I would ask myself if it was even worth it. Getting close to someone, to then lose them. My friendship with my best friend from sixth grade lasted for years after she left, though we never saw each other again. We had Facebook and social media to keep us connected, messaging each other almost every day to talk about our lives, boys, and the silliest of things. But this friendship too came to its natural end as the years went by and we both settled in college – yet another new phase of our lives, for both of us this time.
When I talk about the loss of these friendships, I don’t mean in the strict sense that we never have or will never talk to each other again. I mean it in the sense that we both know that our friendship will never return to its original state, to the closeness that we once had. Physical distance may have been the cause of our separation, but it was ultimately our choice to leave the friendship behind. Aside from my best friend, I knew that the other friendships were going to fade away as soon as they left. It’s hard to stay in touch with someone that you’re not incredibly close with to begin with.
Then there are friendships that are in a sort of paused state. When I moved away for college, I said goodbye to a lot of friends, mostly from my school. Most of them I have never seen again, but some of them I do. With these friends, though I don’t talk to them when I’m in college, it feels natural to see them when I’m back home. The fact that we have this bond from having attended the same school for most of our lives means that we are bound to see each other again whenever distance permits. Not having been close friends with them means that there’s not much of it that can fade away. It’s hard for friendships to fade if they are not so strong to begin with.