—to friends that are perhaps no longer.
Maybe it’s something in the configuration of the sky and celestial objects floating in it, or simply hormones – nonetheless, lately I’ve been drawn a lot towards the feelings that come from every interaction, or the lack thereof, between myself and human beings surrounding me.
I’ve particularly been lost in thoughts during several occasions where I was made to reminisce about the connections I made in the past. Friends, mostly. People who used to rub off on me the way I rubbed off on them, mainly because we shared so many mornings, afternoons, evenings, and maybe even nights together. And the things we said or did not say. Unspoken dialogues that could’ve perhaps glued together the cracked walls, one-way monologues that might’ve been a much-needed icebreaker, or overflowing questions to imply that I still care – if they’d let me.
To you, friend, whom I once knew, who used to be;
How’s your little family doing? Did you finally fall in love with your husband?
I might’ve forgotten your kid’s name – I’m such a bad friend, aren’t I. But also, I’m sure you’re still one of those understanding, kindhearted, and selfless people full of altruistic qualities who wouldn’t take offence for having to remind a long-lost friend the name of your daughter/son again. (See, I even forgot if it’s a boy or a girl. I should probably be too embarrassed to even try to call you ‘friend’ at this point.)From a friend whom people used to mistake each of us for.
Has your health been a lot more steady these days? Has the hospital era finally gone for good?
I hope you’re still reading a lot like we used to do together back then, nerding out and isolating ourselves from the pretty, intimidating girls at school who only talked about cute boys and their dumb crush. Because I no longer do – and I’ve probably turned into one of those irritating women who keep oversharing the same boring stories over their romance department, even though I’ve been with the man I’d like to marry one day for quite a while. No, he’s a lot cooler and better than any of our unrequited, foolish puppy loves back then, rest assured. Sometimes it does feel surreal that we’re even together.
Anyway, what got you excited these days?From a friend whom you introduced the joy of reading long-winded sci-fi novels to.
Have you been enjoying your job? Are your not-so-little brothers doing as great as you seem to be?
I miss taking those little trips to your home that was only a stone’s throw away from our school, you know, whenever I don’t feel like coming home straight from school. Thanks for giving me a place to crash, and more importantly, for teaching me English! Look at me now with all these fancy words in my other writings – I hope you get to read them someday. I have a feeling you’d have an appreciation towards them – after all, you used to love reading those romance drama-infused novels more than anyone I knew, and my writings these days tend to centre around love, relationships, and whatnot, just like how you liked back then.
By the way, do you even still live at the same address? Do you think your Mom would still remember me if I happen to pass through one of these days?From a friend you used to be mad at whenever she couldn’t seem to grasp the things you tried to teach her fast enough.
I dreamed about you (again) last night – when I didn’t even think about you at all lately.
Two separate chapters even, and it was rather a distinctly vivid one. I wish we’d stayed as close-knitted as we used to be back then, so I could tell you all about it. ‘Cause it would’ve been kind of awkward now to suddenly dump all these stories on you, wouldn’t it?
By the way, why do you keep playing music at the most unusual hours, like way past your supposed bedtime? I hope that doesn’t mean you’re sleep-deprived these days. You know you’d eventually nail your studies regardless, don’t you. I mean, look at you go. You’re one of the smartest people I know and to tell you the magnitude of this compliment, let me remind you that I’ve been fortunate enough to always constantly fall into this bubble of intelligent, ambitious, and highly-educated individuals throughout all the different phases in my life. So I hope you constantly give yourself recognition, along with a pat on the back. I would gladly give them to you had we stayed close (geographically and figuratively), for sure.From a friend whom you might’ve thought you lost, only to come back with an email filled with an extensive personal essay a few years later.
I was angry at you back then for assuming that I never wanted to go to those little parties of yours.
I felt left out, I felt like you took away with you another friend I loved equally, I felt like I lost the people whom I’d grown very fond of when I thought the fondness was mutual. But I wish I had the courage and courtesy to share what I felt, so maybe that way you’d have the opportunity to try to appreciate what I had in mind, and maybe we’d stay friends for a little longer.
Anyway, congratulations on a picture-perfect life – an amazing wife, a dream job at your dream company, and a PR at arguably the most amazing country to live in. Like I said last year, I’m genuinely happy for you. It’s refreshing to also see that you still maintain the long-distance friendship with some of our peers back then – I’ve missed you all terribly these days.From a friend who once got lost with you when attempting to try out a different supermarket on the other side of the town.
Hey there, little Moms.
You’re doing amazing and I hope you’re surrounded by people who keep reminding you that you are. Sorry I could only watch your triumphs and struggles from behind a tiny screen – I hope someday I’d get to give you the warmest hug that you deserve for raising such an awesome tiny human. He/she must’ve been so grateful and lucky to have come out of your wombs and got to call you mother.From a friend whom you used to exchange insane made-up scenarios about your high school crush with.
I heard you married my high school friend – I didn’t even know how you two met. It’s funny I only looked him up on social media because of a very bizarre and random dream I had the other day – then I found out that he married you a month before. Then again, our neighbourhood is not that vast, I guess, so that would make perfect sense. But I’m still curious about everything about the two of you!
Also, thanks for those scattered childhood memories around the hills, meadows full of wildflowers and grass as tall as we were, and sunflower fields that are now no more than a fancy cluster of minimalist-themed houses. You’ve grown so much from the jolly yet silly little girl that you once were, into a wise and sensible woman, haven’t you? You both are meant to be for each other indeed.From a childhood friend whom you’d helped to be much less introverted than she once was.
You’ve been climbing up the corporate career ladder quite fast, haven’t you?
And your little sister seemed very happy with her routine, so I love that for you both.
You know, I still remember how you tried to hide your tears at the airport, 7 AM in the morning, when I waved my final goodbye in front of the security check that day. I’m sorry that it was such a brief friendship that we had – even though we had a full year filled with endless chances that we never took before that day.
Tell your mother and aunt I said hi, will you? To this day, they’re still some of the most compassionate people that I’ve met, and I hope they always remember that they truly are.From a friend who was extremely thankful that you helped her get a long-overdue haircut.
I’m sorry that we never reconciled, and that whatever sort of friendship that we had had to end abruptly and prematurely.
You would still be one of the most lively people I’ve met throughout my life, and I hope you stay true to that part about you, always. The well-kept memories that we both shared would probably always hang on a tiny corner at the back of my mind, but you don’t have to do the same – as a matter of fact, don’t. I’m only doing it because I appreciate what we had – but I don’t expect it to be reciprocated. Not at all. You just continue doing you, will you?From a friend who remembers.
Ah, you. Of course.
Can you remind me again what your name is? I wish we had asked for each other’s email, at least, when you got off that taxi. Or during our conversation on the intercity train. Thanks for paying for the trip, by the way. I did get home safely the day after. The flight was nice although the customs queue during transit was terrible. In case you forgot, Edmonton was the name of the city I lived in. And my name is Bila. Rings a bell?
I’m back in our hometown for a little over two years now – have you ever come home again? Is there perhaps a chance that we both might’ve happened to be in the city at the same time, somehow, just a few miles apart, unknowingly?From someone who unfortunately forgets – but wishes she hasn’t.
From the most sincere place—
and with the most genuine thoughts,
(Insert whichever nickname you used to call me with back then.)