Alison* and I became best friends in high school. She was the friend that, as a teenager, you couldn’t picture a future without.
For so long, I was a shy, nerdy girl who struggled to make friends, but once I met her in art class, I opened up. I blossomed into the confident girl I was hiding underneath my quiet demeanour.
As high school progressed, we became inseparable. We happily skipped out on big school dances to hang out at my house and watch episodes of SVU that we had seen 10 times before.
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We’d sleep over each other’s houses to the point where my mother asked why she wasn’t around, and her mother did the same.
I didn’t have anyone like her in my life before, and I have met no one like her since.
I miss her. A lot. We text from time to time; we even did a Zoom call at the beginning of the quarantine. About five minutes into our call, her husband came into the screen holding their newborn and waved at me.
I waved back with a smile and then remembered why our friendship fell apart.
After high school, I moved away to university, and she stayed behind to do real estate. We didn’t see each other often, but we did our best to stay in touch as best friends promise to do.
When I graduated, I moved back home, and it was she that planned my party with all of our friends. It felt like everything was back to before.
On one Friday night at our favourite bar, she introduced me to the new guy she was dating. It was someone she’d met at work, a really funny guy she knew I’d like. I was excited to meet him, and sure enough, we hit it off.
For a moment, I thought I would be jealous to share her just as I’d moved back home, but there were no feelings of animosity. She looked genuinely happy, and it made me very happy.
He was someone who came from a very religious family, which she did not. But they meshed perfectly.
They celebrated a one year anniversary together, then it was two, then three. Sure, Alison and I were spending less and less time together, but that happens when you’re in a relationship. I thought nothing of it.