High School Friends

This is my first summer home from college and potentially my last summer at home. Even though my activities aren’t that different from last summer’s, they feel different. My friends and I have had radically different years, experiences that have changed us all. We have all these stories that we’ll never be able to catch up on, and all these moments that define the start of our adult lives. I’m sure my friends had random moments where they wanted to cry in a coffee shop because they missed home, or heard some hurtful gossip. We all remember taking care of new friends, getting lost, and flailing to feed, clothe, and care for ourselves. Did my friends feel alone the first time they got sick at school? Did they anticipate every break only to feel stifled by the rules of home? I’m sure my friends had boys that confused the hell out of them. But this isn’t high school and the ambiguous relationships with various boys are sometimes shorter than the length of time between phone calls with your old friend. When you try to fill them in, what do you say? It could have been something. It seemed like it was. We don’t talk anymore. Sometimes you say that, sometimes you skip it. It’s tiring to call a group of girls and explain your own failings, misjudgments, and successes. We tend to share the positives and the accomplishments, projecting an “I’ve got it all figured out” attitude. And they do the same. Those little omissions create a kind of rift between friends because you’ll never know that much about their lives again, not in the way you used to. Telling a story is a halting process; they only know one character, they don’t know the acronyms, the buildings, the city, the new friends. You try to keep in touch with new friends, the ones who were merely hypothetical last summer. Last summer you promised that you would always be friends with these people. With lots of them, it was true. You will always have home and you will, knock on wood, always have these friends. But it sure won’t be the same.

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