From Minutes to Miles

0.1 miles away

You became my friend because I was crying on the playground. The memory is fuzzy in my brain, but we’ve been inseparable ever since. After school, I tried to stay at your house as long as I could until I received frantic texts from my sister on my whereabouts. We discovered One Direction in your living room and learned all about them in one afternoon. Out of the five phone numbers I memorized, yours was one of them.

0.2 miles away

If I ran to your house, I could get there in a minute. You’d open the door puzzled as I stood there catching my breath. Two of our friends lived on your street and we would walk back together from their houses on sunny afternoons.

One year for Mother’s Day, I gave your mother white orchids that stayed alive for longer than we expected, but I don’t remember what I gave my own. I went to a different middle school than you for a year but that didn’t change how many afternoons we spent at the park down the street. I opened up to you on the swings in Grade 8 and you gave me tough love — what I needed to hear, but not what I wanted.

14 miles apart

My family moving to an adjacent city became my excuse for isolating myself. I’d already felt distant from you. We had one class together in Grade 10 and I tried to hold onto every minute. I’d avoid going ‘home’ because I hated it. It felt like my life was ripped away from me when my habits of terrible communication and keeping people out of the loop seemed to be the cause of losing you.

I thought you were constant because you were my best friend.

4.7 miles apart

I moved back to the same city, but was excluded from group chats and pretended to understand inside jokes. I became closer to people that were acquaintances but still tried to tell you things about my life. Even if I called them my close friends, it didn’t sound right coming from my mouth.

149 miles apart

I didn’t plan to be in Canada for university and you were there when I learned what UBC was. Someone asked me who my best friend was and I didn’t have an answer. I’d send you memes or funny tweets that you’d enjoy, and you’d reply, but you’d never send any my way.

142.3 miles apart

You started your first semester three weeks after mine and I went to visit during Remembrance Day weekend. We sat in uncomfortable silence for longer than I anticipated. I don’t know if you’re waiting for me to say the obvious or afraid to start the conversation. Sometimes you act in ways that are similar to me and I don’t know how we lost our way.