Tethered Hearts

21 May

Friendship, a good, solid friendship, isn’t really about knowing the everyday tiny details of someone else’s life. Tiny details are windows, means to an end, a way of comprehending perspective and filling conversation. They are added bonuses to knowing someone; they create a path to becoming friends; and the more details someone feels comfortable sharing, the more comfortable you know they feel with you. Once the friendship is formed, however, I don’t believe details are necessarily necessary.

A friendship, a long-lasting, soul-expanding, feels-the-same-no-matter-how-much-time-goes-by friendship, is built on so much more than tiny snipets of work stories and social circle drama. That kind of friendship comes from connection, from seeing inside someone special who changes you and makes you want to be better, and them feeling the same about you. This kind of friendship touches you profoundly and ties two hearts together beyond time and space (insert Doctor Who parody here).

I have been lucky enough to find a few of these connections throughout my existence, each coming to me at times I needed them and staying with me despite all the turns and pitfalls that have defined them.

Monica was the first. She was unexpected because she found me when I felt unloveable and unwanted. I have talked about the person I was when I was younger-quiet, anxiety-ridden, lonely. She was the opposite (at least that is how I saw her). She was loud, boisterous, social, and unafraid, all the things I wished I could be. I met her in my church youth group and it didn’t take long for us to become inseparable. She helped me break down my shell I had been living in so that when I left for college I could finally shed it fully and leave the infinitesimal, insecure girl I had been in the past and eventually become the woman I am today. College was hard on us, however. We ended up going to different schools not that far away and it was hard finding a balance between our relationship and the new life I was creating. College changes people and that was true for both of us. It was hard to be who we had been in high school.

Miraculously, we held on and although after college wasn’t much easier and we fought a lot, there remains this tether that connects us to one another. Within the last year, for example, she sent me a message saying she didn’t want to be my friend anymore because it was so hard with me being so far away. A few months later she found me again. Time changes us and makes it hard, but you can’t not be friends with someone who shares a piece of who you are.

The second friend I want to talk about is TOGA. Unrequited love turned sour currently defines us I suppose, but before the bad, was a good, very good friendship. I met him when I was dating Mr. Wrong and despite the ugly ending to that relationship with his best friend, we managed to get closer instead of ceasing to exist. He was my escape, my exploration of thinking beyond my bubble of comfortability, my haven when shit got hard. He was always up for a fun adventure or to sit on the couch and watch mind-numbing television (Jersey Shore anybody). We were each other’s sanity and insanity and everything in between. Then things got weird and I couldn’t just be his friend anymore. I wish I had handled things differently, but I didn’t. Now, we are each dating other people and it is hard finding an “us” again that makes sense. Despite all this he still feels like home.

Finally, there is the newest addition to the bunch. Rogers. Rogers was the cool coworker when I started my job in Arizona. She was someone I wished I could get to know, but my residual shy-ness wouldn’t let me make the first move. I don’t entirely remember how it started, but I do know it was all her. She invited me over for the first time, she figured out our mutual love of football, she was the outgoing, talkative one that created the prepossessing thing that emerged. Less than a year, that is what took to become something I have a hard time living without. In that time I have seen her get married, reunite with her father, and move across the country to Wisconsin. I now know that love can grow quickly and sneak up on you, but it follows you and digs in. I think my friendship with Rogers is so strong because of all the others that have come before, taught me what mistakes to avoid and where to shore up and build on. We talk less now that she moved, I hear less of her details, but we still share what is bothering us, what is making us happy, and which emotions we are feeling on any given day. I can’t wait to visit to get a more extensive picture of how she is living now, but it is not entirely necessary.

Before she moved we got tattoos to commemorate the time we have had thus far…

tat

I don’t have a picture of hers, but it’s not as awesome lol.

There are others I considered mentioning in this post, because clearly there are others with echos in my life. SMC who was like a sister in college, but who I can’t see a future with right now. Sloth who is complicated in his own right. Wizard and RSCowboy who are just always around when I need them. Anarchy is in the infancy of being something great. Then, of course, Lucky Penny who has inspired and challenged me to live a life that is more than what I ever expected it could be. I love them all, but all their stories will just have to be saved for another day.

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