Awaiting Collegiate Separation
Image by Almond Butterscotch
Okay, so its finally time. I can finally say it… After fifteen years of schooling, I, alongside the rest of the class of 2008, can finally say: Goodbye High School.
Yes, its yet another graduation. Following the montessary, elementary, and middle school graduations, it is now High School Graduation time. And it’s not quite the same. I think we all recognize this difference, this exciting, anxious, nerve-racking, frightening difference… This graduation isn’t like the others before it because all of those graduations were just moving schools, but everything else remained constant-same people, same area, same living conditions; the only thing that would change was the building and teachers. But this is more. Its the end of an era. No longer are we expected to make mistakes and learn from them. Now, if we make a mistake, we better cover it up. No longer can we blame our teachers for being incompetent; all of the teachers we have heretofore have degrees in their areas and many are published.
Yes, things are going to be different, but that post is for another time. Right now, I have something far, far more important to discuss: Friendships. For those people who know me very well, this is going to be redundant and repetitive. For those who don’t, pay attention. I define a ‘friend’ to be a rare thing; a friend is someone you are close to, someone you can talk to about anything. A friend to me is what a lot of people call a best friend. What they call ‘friend’ I call acquaintance. Someone you know or have a class or two with or sit with at lunch and what not. You might know their birthday, boyfriend/girlfriend troubles, passions, etc., but you still cannot honestly tell yourself your close with them and you can be yourself around them without fearing about insecurities or weaknesses or biases. I truly and honestly believe that on average, most people don’t have a single friend. I, as a result, consider myself blessed. I have four friends, and each friendship is so different from the other. The dynamics are insane.
Accordingly, this post is dedicated to the following people:
Jenn Welsh, the one and only Wookiee
Elise Welsh, also known as Lisa
Tasha Gorel, also known as Tonka Truck
Hanan Dhanani, my one and only Jellybean and Queen Wee Drocker
These are the four people, in no particular order except reverse alphabetical by last name, upon whom my character is based. The four of them have all affected me since I have known them (3.5 years, 3 years, 2 years, and 4 years respectively) in ways I cannot even begin to list. Jenn and Elise will be going to Texas Tech for college and I’ll see very little of them, and poor Tonka is still in High School. Jellybean I haven’t seen since she moved back to Canada 3.5 years ago, but miraculously we have been able to take a six month old acquaintanceship and made it stronger despite a total lack of physical communication, or any communication outside of email, instant messengers, and the very rare telephone call. I expect to see somewhat more of Hanan since I’ll be in Boston and she’ll be in Kingston, Canada, a brief seven hours apart. (We jokingly have been making plans to meet up in Syracuse once a month since its approximately equidistant after factoring in border control). Tasha, being the bubbly, energetic gal she is, I fear not of losing touch with her, due to the fact (and its somewhat sad, but totally true) that Facebook will be more than enough to maintain. Elise and I have to the conclusion we have no fears of losing touch, because of a simple truth: our relationship is no longer that of friendship but of sibling-hood. I couldn’t find a better example of a sister in my life than Elise.
The interesting one, of course, will be Jenn. She fears we will lose touch because she doesn’t can’t do long-distance relationships. Experience confirms this, but again, this change coming up is a big one, and perhaps, just perhaps, that will help bridge the multi-thousand mile gap. My friendship with Hanan has qualmed my fears, but Jenn’s history with the likes of Sam Kelly and Bridget _______ have proved otherwise for her… We have standing plans to go skydiving sometime this summer. I should probably go look into how much that’s gonna cost and go find out which Houston-based tandem diver we’re gonna be going to. Even if we don’t follow through with these plans, I think I want to make more plans with her; make plans for the sake of having plans… at least until we figure out how this long-distance friendship will work… I think be able to say we have plans, at least for me, that sense of ‘knowing’ we’ll still do things together and will still be amazing friends, I still need that comfort.
Have I mentioned at all what that girl means to me? She means everything. Everything. If she ever needed it, I’d be first in line to be her private security. I’ll take every bullet, every piece of shrapnel, everything. I live for her smile and I live for her friendship. It is everything to me. Words cannot describe it.
So a couple hours from now, each member of the Clements High School class of 2008 will cross the stage and officially be gone from Clements. But for those few who I have mentioned above, my friends, I say to you, We will always have Clements.
Except for Hanan.