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An Open Letter to My Best-Friend-Turned-Stranger

When I think back to this time last year, I never would have assumed you wouldn’t be a part of my life now. Of course things would have changed. But I thought you would’ve known about these changes. Instead, you became the change.

Throughout our friendship I had friends and family who questioned your character, but it was all just background noise. We got along well, and we understood each other when others didn’t. We went through so many “firsts” together, like trying out new food places, activities, and experiences. We went through most of adolescence together, from our awkward stages, to actually planning the future. But the only thing we didn’t plan was not being in each other’s lives.

When you picked the university we both knew you would attend, and I picked the one no one ever imagined, or had even heard of – that was when our friendship changed. For the first time, we didn’t have much to talk about. We were both planning our own separate paths, but the realization didn’t hit us until later. Not once did I think our friendship would have an expiration date. Perhaps our relationship had peaked. That final summer, which I had imagined would be the best of our lives, just didn’t happen. Maybe that’s why it was so easy. It was also easy to cut ties because I was moving 2000 miles away. 

This is the explanation I owe you, the one I never got to tell you because if I delayed pressing send, maybe it wouldn’t have become a reality. I’m sorry I didn’t fight for you. Maybe it was just that I could no longer overlook certain qualities in you that I wish you didn’t have, and conjured up qualities I wish you had instead. I’m sorry I didn’t try harder to fix things. But maybe this was meant to happen. Maybe my expectations for you were too high. With the label of “best friend”, I was disappointed when you didn’t handle situations like I wanted you to. I shouldn’t have been waiting for you to change certain aspects about yourself. If I could no longer accept you for all you were, the only solution seemed to be moving on.  

I am sometimes reminded of you when I hear the songs that were once ours, when I’ve accomplished goals we once made together, or when I do the activities we used to do, even though I now do them with other people. We made each other ready for new people. Thank you, for the memories and for teaching me how to be a better friend. We found each other once, maybe our paths will cross in the future. I hope you are doing well.

 

Photos by the author

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