First day of school. 6th grade. Recess.
The swings were my solace.
I was lost in my thoughts when she walked up and asked if she could swing next to me. I’d never seen her before. She was unique. Especially because she saw me.
We talked about where we grew up so far, siblings, parents, pets, and what we liked to do.
We were both new to the school. She moved here from Germany! I transferred due to district boundary changes. Her reason was so much cooler! Germany!?!
We became instant best friends.
The bell rang. Back in to class.
We exchanged numbers, glances, giggles, and folded up triangle notes about the cutest boys we liked.
She eventually sat next to me, between me and the cute boy I liked.
One day, she convinced me to write a “do you like me, check yes or no… if yes, will you go out with me?” note to him. *gasp*
He said yes to both!
My bff and I spent every recess together, every day, that whole year. We were champions at tetherball and four square. Our made up “dance/flip” routines on the parallel bars drew some attention sometimes. I’ll spare you the lyrics. You’re welcome.
I walked home with her, almost every day after school, to her big house with her two parents and an older sister. Her parents invited me to join them for dinner, almost daily. Their meals were delicious because of the conversation, and the love they shared around that table.
I rode my bike to her house on the weekends. I cut through the gap in the brick wall behind Meadowbrook Mall, took Walton, past Brewster, to Old Perch. Left on the side street across from the middle school, follow the curves, all downhill, coasting with my legs straight out, pretending to fly, left on Brittany Court.
We watched old movies I’d never heard of, and made bagel pizzas with string cheese in the toaster oven, which I’d also never heard of.
We set up a gymnastics arena in her room where we had to run, flip, and compete for the perfect landing – on our butt – on her bed. It was hilarious. I always lost, because she was an actual gymnast, but our laughter was better than winning.
We sought adventure. We wrote stories. We ice skated past dark and I got grounded for not telling my mom where I was. We cried on each other’s shoulders when the cute boys broke up with us. Or we broke up with them? I can’t remember the details.
I called her from my grandma’s house when we moved there. I told her I couldn’t ride my bike over anymore because now I lived too far away. She promised it wouldn’t change anything. I had to go to a different middle school temporarily. She promised it wouldn’t change anything.
I called her from my new house! It was even closer to her house than the last one! I told her I’d be going to West Middle School with her! She promised to show me around!
She sat down next to me when I couldn’t stop crying at my locker in 7th grade. The world walked by, staring at the spectacle I made, but she shielded me from their stares. I don’t even remember why I was crying, but I couldn’t stop.
We played with my new kittens. Dressed them up like babies and took pictures of them.
She adored my new baby sister. We brought my new baby sister into my room and just held her for hours.
9th grade. She moved out of state.
I felt lost without her.
I decided to move to my Dad’s house in Armada…