Friday, October 21, 2005
Another for the List
I stood at her door, wearing saggy pajama bottoms and an oversized men's t-shirt, barefoot on the cold linoleum, in the dark. Waiting. Got chocolate? I asked when the door finally cracked open. She grinned and lifted a pillowcase filled with Halloween loot.

We were college freshmen living on the same floor of an all girls dormitory. At first, I would pass her in the morning bathroom rush - we'd nod and smile with towel turbans on our heads and toothbrushes poking into our cheeks. For all of our passing and nodding and smiling - it took my insatiable need for a peanut butter cup at midnight to bring us together. We sat in her room for hours that night, until her roommate kicked us out in search of sleep. At which point, we slunk out to the hallway and sat on the hard floor with our backs pressed against the cool concrete walls.

We spent most of that year up late, talking. We talked on long walks or while stitching designs on thrift-store pants and eating microwaved potatoes dowsed in salt and vinegar. We talked about anything. Growing up. Families. Home. Why we were there. Where we wanted to wind up. Everything unfolded effortlessly between us over plates of potatoes. Later, in letters from home, she would refer to us as soul sisters.

She is the latest one that I've lost. We haven't spoken or written in over a year, and I'm not even sure how to contact her. She has vanished.

And she's just the latest in a growing list of people who have wandered deeply into my life, only to disappear. There's the boy who sat with me in our cafe, sipping coffee, reading scripts and planning how we'd spend our lives together, playing here and there - never settling down. There's the adolescent flirtation that grew to an intense friendship and then became my last kiss, just two weeks before meeting my husband. There are too many; the list is long.

Sometimes I sense them slipping and I simply let them go. Perhaps that makes me to blame: I don't fight for my friendships. I welcome them, I love them, I listen and share and I wait to be needed. But, I don't poke or prod them like a fire needing to be stoked. I let them evolve, as they inevitably will.

And I cherish the ones that remain.

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7 Comments:

I've been thinking alot about the ones that I've let slide.... funny the way friendships evolve. I have to remember that there is a season for all things.

Blogger Neo said...

Mella - I think we've all had friends like that over the years.

They are so precious in the time they are there, and then you minute you blink and their gone.

They are only missing in physical form, because they'll always live on in your heart and mind.

Blogger Michael said...

I know what you mean.


Well done.

Blogger PenelopeFey said...

It took me a long time to realize, it isn't worth fighting for. Evolve: i couldn't think of a better word.

Blogger Susanna Rose said...

Hey Mella!

Beautiful! Reading this post made me think of a friend from Canada, who I lost touch with when I moved to Georgia. I am the queen of falling out of contact with people but was especially sad to lose contact with her. Anyways, 6 years later, she somehow got my e-mail address and we've been in contact recently so you NEVER know how/when you might be able to enjoy long lost friends again! But, as someone already said, there is a season for everything and it does seem that some friendships are only meant for a particular season. Thanks for that thought!

P.S. I'm back and writing again...hope you'll come and visit again soon!(=

Blogger Imaginair' said...

Very poetic writing. A little nostalgic too. You tell the passage between the very deep and intense friendship and the attraction of the sentiments for the boy. We feel the regret ot the lost time when you talked and talked, discovering the world. Now, perhaps you are builting again the world but with somme fear that it may be not possible.... This is what I feel just after reading you

Blogger Diana said...

Good friends stay with you forever, that's what I always heard, but unfortunately, people move, lifestyles change, priorities change, people age and get busy with their own lives, and forget about those whom they touch along their journey. Sad... I love the internet though, a great way to keep in touch and often, make new friends. Great post.

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