For about three days in a row now, I have been conversing via email with an old friend from high school. Conversing with this woman reminded me of my teenage, pre-college, pre-license years. The years when you would have your parents drop you off at the mall with your friends, or embarrass you in front of your first boyfriend. You introduced yourself over a crummy cafeteria lunch table rather than a barstool, or in class, when the teacher wasn’t repeating the homework for the thousandth time. The times when the purest, most honest friendships were made.
It’s a type of bond that cannot be defined by the present. These connections are deemed only by the amount of time you have spent, young, innocent (or not so), and open. These people have seen you at your physical/mental worst and best times. And I believe the reason it is so easy to talk to these people is because they have seen the old and new version of you. (Lets face it, your 3 years of braces couldn’t have gotten any uglier). When you run into them wherever you may, it isn’t that awkward “how are you” type of questioning game that people seem to torture themselves with daily: which is practically pointless and almost cruel, seeing as though the conventional response of “good, yourself? I’m great thank you!” gets old and tiring and IMO just lets you see how little of a shit anyone really gives about how you are actually doing.
Conversing with these people is pleasant and friendly and refreshing. It is reassurance that no matter what issue of your social life or hellish job or demented family matter you bring up, they will not judge you what so ever. They could agree disagree or have no opinion at all on the topic but nothing would be debated or confused or misinterpreted. You can talk about then or now or later and never run out of things to say because there’s just so much you haven’t said in so very, very long. You can confide in them about how your other friendships have gone stale and lost meaning and purpose, and they will most likely agree because finding and keeping friendships such as the one you once had with this person now a days is rare and unusual.
If you are lucky enough to have a friend that you have kept (or has kept you; we have to give them some credit), alongside, kudos to you. These types of people are extraordinary people. Their merit is not measured by how many cool parties they have taken you or how many favors they have granted you. It was simply because they appreciated you as a friend; they were there, and for some amount of time, they stayed.