This week I shall tell you a tale of love…and woe. My story begins back in the 7th grade, when I met my best friend, Lisa. We were so close, one of us would spend the night at the other’s every weekend. We called each other’s mothers “Mom.” We shared a locker, clothes, even a seat at our over-crowded lunch table. She was the first friend I truly loved.
We stayed inseparable until the summer before our junior year of high school. Lisa had always had a problem with the truth, but her lies were always little and white, and so insignificant that they were easy to overlook. But that summer her lies became damaging. Mutual friends suddenly stopped speaking to me. Lisa’s mom, my “other mother,” began giving me cool looks when I visited. When I finally realized what was happening, I was furious and immediately cut Lisa out of my life. We avoided each other for the entire year, but somehow during our senior year we found each other again and settled into a less-than-best-friendship. We kept in touch after graduation and through my freshman year at college. When I came home for the summer, Lisa introduced me to a small group of friends that she had made through work. We hit it off quite well and all of us ended up hanging out together several times that summer.
Then one night, they were supposed to come pick me up and they never came. I called Lisa over and over again. Then I called her friends. Nobody answered. As much as I hoped she had changed, as I crawled into bed that night, I understood once and for all that Lisa was no longer my friend, and had not been for a very long time.
I have not seen or spoken to her since that summer, but I do think about her from time to time. I have my thoughts about why things turned out the way they did, but I don’t think I’ll ever know for sure. It bothers me less and less as the years go by, though I do use my memories of her to conduct myself in my relationships. I’m a better friend today because Lisa was such an awful friend to me then.
Whatever heartaches and troubles you are going through, dear reader, I hope that one day, you will be able to draw strength, and maybe even grace, from them. And I hope that, at the very least, you may be able to use your experiences to help make someone else’s life a little better.
I wouldn’t relive my teenage years again for anything. Tell me about what makes you a good friend at Kate@KateLanders.com.