Yesterday, I went on a long walk with a friend and thought to myself — "Hey, this is nice, I could keep this ritual forever". And then all the times I've felt that way flooded before me The playgroups in school, the tuition friends, the college groups, the friends at work. Every time I connected with someone deeply I was smitten with the idea —
wouldn't it be nice, if it lasted forever?
In hindsight, only a "few" of these many people survived. How few? Count on fingers - few. It makes sense though. Most people bond with you over a shared sense of context — a horrible professor, afterwork drinks, same tennis court timings...but somehow when that context changes, the relationship fizzles. I move for college, you marry a forbearing spouse, I leave town. A natural death only sparred by the occasional “What's up's?" to your stories, till you age. One would say it's impossible to keep so many friendships alive, especially when you are a yearner for depth.
The deeper, authentic ones tend to survive. The version of me in your head is much closer to the version I am at the moment. So maybe, I will quit this job and grow up and leave this town, but I know you will always be there when I reach out, and our conversations will linger even when the horrible manager phases away from our life.
It's difficult to keep moving your life around. All big changes do mean, that someone or the other will drop off. But move on, you must. Instead of mourning our demise, I've decided to reframe this: “For a period in our lives, you were my best friend. And while we move on from our former selves, that version of us, I will still cherish in my memory”
*Ding "What's up?"!"