She had been my best friend at one time and I was looking forward to seeing her. Still, I sat there feeling somewhat lazy to make the trek across one of our most horrible freeways to make it to dinner with her. It was probably roughly 30 miles at most, but would take about 2 hours in the rain and rush hour. My whole body was dreading it.
I started to try and find excuses in my head to avoid the traffic, but I wasn’t willing to let myself off the hook. I wanted to see her. Really strange because I’d seen her probably less than 20 times in the last 3 years, and suddenly it became so important to make it to the dinner.
She had moved out of state last year.
I didn’t even get to see her off. I was out of town on a trip. We did, however, get to spend a weekend together on a beach stay-cation.
Honestly, it all started when she moved 30 miles away, as opposed to 8. We both had lives to lead and we were following… Something. New jobs, better growth opportunities, and passions. She fell in love with the beach community and yoga. So did I, but I was much more in love with my apartment and couldn’t entertain the thought of leaving. I watched her world grow, far away from mine.
We called each other Wifey, but then I saw her post someone else as “Bestie.”
And like a jealous little lover, my heart died a little because I knew I lost what we had. She still thought of me fondly, that was clear. But it was different. That one title put a lot of light on the obvious and unsaid.
There was someone else that she called in the late hours if she needed to talk. Someone else she texted when she was having a bad day…. Or a great day. Someone else who was privy to all conversations that I used to have with her.
Making friends wasn’t easy for me, especially a best friend.
When I met her, I had just gotten out of a relationship – the only relationship where I can truly claim to have shared a best friend in a partner. I was a mess and found it difficult to place my confidence and get close to anybody. Meeting her was a healing touch to my recent burn.
It really wasn’t that terrible, though – growing apart. Nothing happened that logically wouldn’t have taken place. I was prepared for all that. After what I had just lost, I was on the mindset that friendships were always temporary anyway. What I wasn’t prepared for was how much one might actually matter.
And so, I didn’t make it to dinner after all.
I sat in my living room, freezing cold but refusing to take off my work clothes. I was determined to pick myself up from the couch and drive myself to the beach side and see her before she got on her flight the next morning. It was my last chance on this trip and the holiday season had been to busy to see her beforehand.
But I was also still feeling lazy and I started to wonder how much it would really matter to her if I didn’t make it after all. Her bestie was there along with another of their closest friends. Why should I sacrifice my night in when it wouldn’t make or break her night in any way?
I texted her my regrets. My rationale could have been creating a reality of excuses as I actually began getting the chills, feeling very fatigued, and had started to wonder if I was getting sick. That was really what got me to give in and flake out on showing.
She replied back that it was okay and that it was chaos anyway. Apparently, a lot of people had shown up and she wasn’t able to spend enough time with everyone. She always was so loved. Hard not to love that girl. She told me she would be back and also told me to come visit. That was enough encouragement for me and I had already began looking at flights the second I knew I wouldn’t be showing up at that night. Just a few minutes earlier, I was feeling just thismuch lackluster about making the effort to see her until I actually couldn’t. I realised that maybe I don’t know exactly what it would mean to her, but it meant something to me. It was worth following through with.
Who really knows if we will see each other this year. Or ever.
Time flies by so fast and it’ll be faster with the distance between us. Fuck, it was hard enough when she was only a couple of freeways away. Our lives are taking off and it looks like it’s going opposite directions. Still, it’d be nice to keep a loose thread of the best friend that once was. Knowing that someone once loved me enough to pull herself out of bed, sit on my driveway, and watch me cry in the middle of the night just because I called is nice. I’m definitely planning to see her this year, whether I take a plane or she does.
I’m also ready to say goodbye. Spring cleaning my best friend isn’t about spite. It’s about letting go and letting each other fly. It’s hard to fight where the road takes you and a best friend doesn’t always mean forever. I really think we’re both going where we need to be.