When I was a kid, there was a friendship that budded from an uncharacteristic place. It began on a soccer field, on opposing teams where we bumped, pushed and got angry with one another. I remember thinking she was so incredibly annoying. But it truly began when my parents divorced and my sixth grade teacher thought I could use a friend who'd gone through the same thing. Little did we realize who we'd be introduced to that day.
Out of the mess of two eleven year olds lives came a beautiful, natural, kindred-spirits friendship. Something I've never had before and have yet to have again. Our similarities and differences bonded us together in a way like no other. We created our own little world of sleepovers and singing and writing and adventures. No one else, other than my husband, has ever understood me so completely.
But as time went on, we both began to change. Pulled apart to different high schools, we felt the need to be accepted and noticed and all the teenage drama that comes from getting older, slowly began to unravel our beautiful friendship. Although it still continued it was only a very small fragment of what it used to be. Almost a ghost-like appearance of what two young girls had magically created for themselves in a world of rapid change.
I think now, our outward personalities are so different from one another. I almost don't recognize either of us when I see how we are to others from the outside. But at the core of our real selves, I think we're still those same two kids. The ones that would go hiking through the snow, who found inverted footprints and freaked out over the walkie-talkie to a family member who claimed they were behind us and ready to ambush with a pelting of snowballs. The girls who rode bareback through the pasture, only to have the darn horse head straight for the bushes and ended up in a tangled mess of kicking and screaming. The ones who would hide in the hay-shed and sing and harmonize for hours until the sun would slowly start to hang in the sky. Who would sing on nature hikes, in competitions... pretty much just sing together period. There were sleepovers filled with movies and laugh-til-your-sides-ache silliness and late night chats about the things that meant the most to us, knowing that our secrets were safe. I could think of a million more unique memories like those, but you'd lose half a year just hearing them. Poetry contests about a two trees that intertwined and making it past the first few rounds. Writing a journal about how we met and our adventures, calling ourselves the "dynamic duo." We were dorks. But those are some of the best memories I've ever had.
There were so many things that bound us together in our friendship, but overall, I really think it was this beautiful thing of being our true selves with one another. No pretenses, no falsities. Our God-made personalities at their fullest innocence and truth.
I think that's why I've had a hard time letting this friendship go. Over the years, problems came and went, some big, others small, but eventually the friendship faded that slow death. We became strangers. The friendships I've had since that sixth grade meeting have been wonderful. But no friendship has even come slightly close to this one. I've never allowed my true self to fully shine since then. and what a terribly sad thing that is to realize and admit.
But when my life seems to change and morph at intense speeds, the honesty of this friendship somehow ends up grounding me, even now. Even without that closeness today, the reminder of what was and the revelation of my own true self at that time, helps me see the good in changes and even friendships that start out strangely. My next kindred-spirit friendship could still start on a soccer field, angrily wishing that other girl would get out of my way and let me do my thing. Who knows.