I’m fumbling over my words rereading a series of texts that ended an hour ago. With memories and feelings flooding my brain as those mental levies I had built up over years collapsed against the onslaught of my humility. Somehow I’m incredibly happy and sad at the same time with both feelings pulling my reactions to the extremes as I try to process just how I’m going to sit down and tell myself that everything will be alright.

This is all part of change. The changing tides of life and the reality that the only constant is the progression of time towards its inevitable end. And as I’m coming to, as that fog that swarmed my mind is fading, I can see that what I’m experiencing is the only natural response to saying my goodbyes to my best friend. Those tears that flowed from my eyes being the only way forward. When I say goodbye I don’t mean something like he’s dying of cancer or something click-baity, I mean he is dying like we all are, but at least in the immediate he’s still himself.

When I mean “saying my goodbyes”, what I really mean is that I was saying goodbye to my best friend as he leaves the States to begin a new part of his life with a girl he loves and a life he has the chance to start anew.

Almost like a baptism of sorts, those final texts weren’t final, but rather a closing chapter on a part of our friendship as we come to terms that that youthful bond that held us together is undergoing a change as life transforms us. Emerging on the other side as buddies, but ever so different as our priorities change alongside the circumstances.

Now I’m sitting here and I’ve never felt so alone.

I know everything will be alright and that this life he’s going to make will be awesome.

I think what’s still impacting me is those lingering memories we’ve built together. Coming to the forefront of my mind all day as the clock ticked down to his departure for his aeroplane.

They all feel almost like a dream; those moments of absolute fear during some darker moments combine with the euphoria of hanging out with someone who just gets you. Suicidal tendencies with a weeklong silence that hit a few years ago mixed with childhood moments of something as simple as building a damn in Spring Creek Park. Having my back one night and removing me from a situation that would’ve escalated to me doing cocaine and the simple joy of playing Halo or Battlefield. Random texts quoting some show from like eight years ago and the immediate prioritization for the both of us to listen to each other in hard times. It’s time I never had to trade for the world and what I’d call a blessing, if such a thing exists.

And crying, just losing my composure, for once feels appropriate. In that sensation of loss is the comfort that I’m strong enough to move forward. All I can do now is wait for a message that he made it. Then the conversations will resume and the friendship will continue. But for a brief few hours today I think we freaked the fuck out that all of this is changing.

Whatever happens. I’m glad it’s happening.

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