You will stop talking to childhood friends that you had sleepovers with every weekend. You will having falling outs with family members that you used to celebrate every birthday alongside. You will lose the people you love the most to stupid fights and distance and death.
The worst part of your 20s is realizing that the people you thought you had a lifelong bond with aren’t all going to stick around. Some of them will fade out of your life slowly, the hangout sessions and texts gradually lessening over time. And some of them will be gone in a heartbeat after a brutal fight, after you exchange hurtful words that you never realized you meant.
Maybe you’ll reconnect one day, far in the future. Maybe you’ll only interact through Facebook stalking and Instagram likes from now on. Or maybe you’ll never see each other again because the old wounds will never heal or because you’ll just stop caring about them the way you once did before.
In your 20s, you have a rude awakening. You realize that just because you love someone, that doesn’t mean you are meant to stay in each other’s lives. Just because you were close when you were kids, that doesn’t mean that you are going to stay close as adults.
They might not even be the one to walk away. You might be the one to end things after they show you a side that you never wanted to see, a side that you never knew existed. After they make it impossible for you to keep them in your life for any longer, even if you want them there. After they prove that they aren’t worth the time and energy anymore.
Even though the last thing you want is to say goodbye to them, to cut them out of your life as if they meant nothing to you, you might not have a choice. You have to take care of yourself first. You have to do what is right for you, even if it feels wrong.
The worst part of your 20s is realizing that anyone can let you down, no matter how much history you have, no matter how much love you once shared. Anyone can hurt you. Anyone can abandon you. Anyone can screw you over.
You will spend time in your 20s missing people that you wish were still in your life. You will wonder whether you should text them, whether you should invite them out for dinner, but then you will remember that they’re not the same person you knew when you were young. Your relationship with them will never be the same. Some things can never be fixed.
But the best part of your 20s is realizing that you don’t actually need some of the people that you thought you couldn’t live without. You can find happiness without them. You can feel whole without them.
You are okay without them. And you are mature enough to hope that they are doing okay, too.