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The Recycling of Friends

August 31, 2013

Last night, I went out with a group of friends from middle school, most of whom I haven’t seen in years. I wasn’t going to join them for drinks–not because I thought it was going to be awkward or anything like that, but because I really needed to pack for the big move tomorrow. In the end, I thought, what the hey? I should be enjoying my last few nights in Toronto.

Originally, I was just going to drop in and say Hi, stay for an hour, and then leave. After all, I was going to be in that part of the neighbourhood (having dinner with MV) anyway; I might as well drop by to say hi.

So I did “drop by,” but the “dropping by” turned out to be a stay-for-the-whole-night. I had so much fun that I didn’t want to leave. We all caught up, laughed, and reminisced. There was cake, but it was chocolate. DG yelled across the table, “I remember that you don’t like chocolate!!” I laughed and exclaimed that no one seems to remember this about me although it comes up all the time.

I think the funniest part of the night was when HL asked me why MDN and I aren’t living together anymore and SV said, “It’s because MDN stole Tina’s boyfriend. They hate each other now. They have sworn not to talk to each other for the rest of their lives.” I laughed so hard that I was crying. HL thought I was crying because I was sad and that he had brought up a touchy topic too soon. He kept looking at me and exclaiming, “Oh sh-t, too soon. My bad.” It was hilarious. SV kept winking at me, signalling to me that he wanted to keep the joke going. I agreed with everything SV said added at the last minute, That, and MDN moved back to Toronto. Despite the fact that HL was in full business attire and looked all grown up coming out for drinks from his accounting gig, he was, deep down, just the boy I knew when I was 13–gullible as ever.

As the night continued, the group reminded me of the copious love letters that I used to write to the boys back in middle school. SV reminded me that the best line in my love letter to him was “You are not like any other boy I know.” That sounds like a sentence I stole out of a rom-com. HL laughed and told me that he still has all of the Valentine’s Day cards I wrote to him. He also reminded me of “Felicity.” I said, who? He said, “Remember? Don’t tell me you don’t! You made up a daughter for us named Felicity!” I laughed so much I almost got water up my nose. I told them how sorry I was for being so crazy back then. HL said, “Was? You still are.”

At the end of the night, I was really glad that I came out. LT-W asked me if I had a big apartment in Montréal. She wanted to know that if she came up to visit, I would put her up. I was pleasantly surprised and said, Of course! Before I left, I reminded her that she could come up anytime. She turned to JL and said, “Road trip?” And there were smiles all around.

HL and I exchanged numbers because he told me that he goes to Montréal every November for a school conference. I said, Oh my God! Give me your number now, so we can meet up! SV winked at HL and said, “That’s new,” as in “That’s a new way to pick up a person. She’s trying to pick you up man (wink wink nudge nudge)” The boys laughed as HL repeated “Yes, that’s new.” I said, well, I guess it’s new to you since you are probably used to people saying, ‘Add me on Facebook!’ or ‘Message me on Facebook!’ but I don’t have Facebook, so THAT’S WHY it’s ‘new.’

It’s sad when “texting” and “calling” have become so foreign that it’s new again.

At the end of the night, I was sad to say goodbye to the old friends who were becoming new friends again, but the thing that was saving me from full on depression was knowing that this is just the beginning. Friends come and go all the time, even if only for a little while. Sometimes they leave and then come back. Sometimes you leave and come back. Sometimes, no one comes back.

But I don’t think there is anything sad about this. I’m a strong believer in the recycling of friends. Sometimes, a friend has to leave your life for a bit to get thrown back into the “universal friend cycle,” but I believe that eventually, that friend will come back into your life, one way or another.

My, I’m quite philosophical when I’m still up at 1 in the morning and am starving.

I’ve seen a lot of friends this past week because I’m moving back to Montréal tomorrow for my last year of undergrad. I’ve seen current friends, old friends, and have met new friends. I am so grateful for all of the love and care I’ve received this week. This summer wasn’t particularly amazing (not anything like last summer), but this last week made up for it. I’m glad.

And now, eight hours before my car leaves my house for Montréal, I feel the surge of excitement running through me. I am excited for new opportunities and experiences. I am excited for fiestas and school events (i.e. graduation ball!!!!!!).

But most of all, I am excited to see old friends and make new friends…because, of course, I am happiest when I am among friends.

But you already know that.

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