My two very best friends from college live many miles away from me. One is up north where it snows too much and the other is in an entirely different country! They are both on my mind right now and I am missing them greatly. Having been out of school for over five years, I realize just how important those years together were: they established a strong foundation.
Strong relationship foundations are the epitome of any successful relationship, especially when it comes to maintaining long distance relationships. I’ve been very successful at long distance relationships, having married my long distance boyfriend (!) and now still able to call these girls my “best friends” – even though we’ve lived in separate places longer than we were together at school.
I love that I can turn to each friend for support in different areas of my life. I turn to one to sort through my deepest secrets; I turn to the other when I am drowning in life, and can’t make heads or tails of my feelings. I turn to both for endless love, joy, and understanding.
So, navigating adult life without my best friends close by is hard. While they are always only a phone call away, it would be so much richer to enjoy their company in person. I desire endless love, joy, and understanding into the late hours of the night, drunkenly giggling over inside jokes. I would love to see their new haircuts in person, or buy them that sweater they’ve been eyeing. As it stands, I don’t know what their hair looks like or what they want, because that kind of stuff doesn’t come up over text messages. Being detached from their daily life is saddening.
While I miss them dearly, I am proud of where we are in our lives. We were never meant to live in the same city. We all showed up in the same dorm freshman year of college, and we all had plans to leave once our four years were complete. We had plans to pursue careers and build families: we are all doing all of those things. And that is incredible.
We do not have a standing “girls night” or the ability to make Saturday afternoon plans on a whim. I long for that to somehow change, but it seems unlikely. Instead, however, I have been given something deeper. Our friendship exists in the metaphysical, always there for one another in solidarity. Shared laughs over a restaurant table seem superfluous in comparison, and so, it is okay. Just as the distance is long, the quality of the relationship is extensive, beautiful, and fulfilling.
Anna and Jenn, thank you for being my very best friends.