when i was fifteen years old some friends of mine started spreading some unfortunate stories about me around my high school. i had some crazy stuff happen to me after that, as high school is naturally a cruel environment and the people there (often by no fault of their own) tend to succumb easily into the trap. i’ve always maintained that it’s easiest to be cruel and unkind in high school because there isn’t much else going on. you wake up, go meet your friends, gossip, try and be liked, go home, watch tv or play after-school football, do your homework and go to sleep.
i had too much going on outside of school to give a damn about what people had to say about me while i was there. life when i was fifteen wasn’t easy, and it had nothing to do with that little p-side world. when i came home, my homework was typically the least of my concerns. and i was okay with that. in fact, i didn’t even give it much thought at the time. when you’re forced to deal with something bigger than yourself, you push through it without recognizing it. it isn’t until later that you look back and see what you achieved.
the point is that when all the craziness was going down in my sad little high school, there were four or five people i was able to turn to. people who didn’t hear the stories about me because they didn’t spend much of their time in class or the cafeteria. people who wouldn’t have cared even if they had heard the stories. people who learned to love me, despite how terrible i could be to them (and them to me) at times. the kind of love that is built in high school, blended with loyalty and certainty that will probably be intact until the end of time, whether or not you know it or believe it.
as much as i loved them, i lost them all when my four years ended in 2003. i kept in touch for about a year and then i moved on. i had little choice. things happen. they were always there though. and so was i, waiting, just in case. if they had called i would have answered. sometimes i even believed that they’d do the same.
and now, six years later, baby steps are being made. i don’t want to attribute this entirely to facebook and twitter, but what can i say. messages and comments and likes. whatever. it is what it is! and i love how in the end, after everything, after what’s happened over the past ten years of my life, it comes down to the same people it did in the beginning.
i know that this is rare and i’m lucky. i know that things don’t always come full circle, not for everyone. sometimes people lose their best friend, someone they’ve known since the first grade, and they never get them back. they don’t even get the chance for baby steps. i never really considered it. i left things as they were. but now that i see there’s a chance, i’m taking it. i can’t afford to pass it up. i know what i’d be losing.