Throughout my life I’ve been fortunate enough to have a number of friends from a number of different places at a number of different times. I’ve moved around so naturally some have come, some have gone, some are still here and some aren’t. I’ve never really been bothered when any of them have disappeared except in the case that I’m about to talk about. The friendship in question may not have ended quite the way that it should have but what it did do was confirm a belief that I’ve always had; that we meet some people in our lives for a reason and even if we don’t realise it at the time, we’re supposed to learn something from these people. I think I may have recently figured out what it was that I was meant to learn.
The person in question was totally different from pretty much any close friend I’ve had before or since and I think that’s perhaps what made them so special. Standing at barely 5 foot, hailing from a city I’d never heard of in a country I’ve never been to; this person was a far-cry from the 6,3, kind-of lanky white boy that writes what your reading. Yet from the second our hands came into contact and our eyes locked onto each other’s (complete with that thing where you linger on each-other for what feels like an hour) I think we both knew we were going to be close.
Not only were our physical appearances a direct contrast but so were our initial personalities. I, on one hand, was chatty, loud and maybe a little too brash and obnoxious for my own good. She on the other hand was shy, softly spoken and sometimes a little too unsure of herself for hers. Yet we clicked; almost instantly we were bantering and making jokes that any outsider wouldn’t understand and maybe even think were a little strange or offensive. By one month we were hugging when parting ways. By three months we knew things about each other that we didn’t tell a lot of our closest friends and colleagues. By 4 months we were holding hands in public, using any excuse to make physical contact and doing other weird ‘they-may-be-just-friends-now-but-its-building-up-to-something-more’ type s*it reserved for crappy rom-coms. By four and a half, maybe five, months we’d seen each other at our best and worst and knew we could show each other every side of who we were without fear of judgement.
The amazing thing about friendships of this nature is that the parties involved often have an uncanny ability of bringing the best out of each other. I became more thoughtful, less inpatient (maybe it’s a cultural thing but she could put saints to shame!) and felt like I could take on the world. All the while she became more sure of herself, more talkative and witty, her vocabulary broadened hugely (picking up a lot of my conversational Welsh slang along the way) and she seemed to rarely not be smiling, even with the impending pressures that were waiting around the corner for her.
Unfortunately even as much as we tried to ignore them these pressures got bigger and uglier as they got closer. Due to matters involving ridiculous legislation way above either of our control she would soon have to leave my country (that she contributed more to than many people born in it) and return to the one mentioned above. We made the most of the time we had left; we went out to eat, partied a little, went for coffee, cooked each other meals, took up a night class together, signed up for Zumba (for nothing, since the instructor fell pregnant before we ever actually went!), I even met her mother. Inevitably and without a Polaroid in sight things started to develop. After almost a year of being around each other and interacting at least a few days of every week I was ready to move past the ‘Friendship Stage’ and, for what it’s worth, I believe she was pretty high on me as well. We even admitted to each other that in different circumstances we would both be more than willing to give each other a chance at being ‘more-than-friends’. To cut a long story short and due in most part to the issue described above this was not to be.
Sadly, and I chalk this down to inexperience (I’d never really felt the ‘love’ thing before), fear of loss and maybe even trust issues I did not react well to this stimulus. We argued and fell out over an issue that on hind-sight wasn’t really there in a scenario that I’m not too proud to admit was at least 60 maybe even 70% my fault where I jumped to a conclusion that I had no right or basis to jump to. This was particularly distressing as it resulted in this person, who I honestly adored and who was already under an immense amount of pressure and needed my support more than ever, scolding me and despite my protests (I’ve never ‘begged’ for anything but I came mighty close over this) denying me the chance to say goodbye to her properly before taking off to a place that isn’t exactly nearby, it’s not even the same continent and I haven’t seen her since.
After spending far too much time drinking, smoking cigarettes (maybe the odd other thing) and listening to Bruno Mars I pulled my head out of the gutter and got my life back on track. I did the upset thing, the angry thing, the ‘Quick, I need to get laid by somebody right now!’ thing and all points in between. Truth is with a clear mind I finally understood that this girl and my time with her was meant to teach me something.
At the end of our time together I spent too long reading into things that weren’t there when I should have been focusing on the positives. The laughs, the talks, the immense sense of trust and protectiveness that we seemed to have over each other and the fact that she bought a warmth and positivity into my life that would take a long time to learn to live without.
The point I’m trying, so very badly, to make is that if you have a close friend or family member; even if they do something that kind of p*sses you off or puts some doubt in your mind never let that be the thing that defines your relationship and never be so inward thinking that you forget about what they’re going through when they do these things. This is what I did and I paid the price. I’ll be saying goodbye to my family and my best friends in around 6 weeks and even though they do things that bug me and I’m sure I do the same to them, I’d never let anything negative overshadow the good stuff as it’s this stuff that matters; appreciate what the relationship is and don’t squander it over what you want it to be.
I’ll likely never see the girl discussed in this piece again but from the bottom of my heart I wish her the best and thank her for the time she spent in my life. I loved that girl, I really did…
I’m Tha Bozz and that’s my opinion.