January 31, 2012


When third grade ended and school let out for the summer, I met my one and only best friend on the way home. We were both carrying bags full of junk collected from the school year and we both ended up crossing the street at the same time. Jennifer Manson* was a grade higher than me and lived a couple blocks away from me. We walked home together that day- I walked her home and then ran home to dump my bag of stuff and change out of my school uniform (Catholic school) before running back over to her house to play. 
Lovie and her BFF

Jennifer Manson and I became fast friends. Best friends. We spent all summer together and were inseparable; I even went on vacation with her and her family.  It was the best summer of my life: We were 8 and 9 years old, it was summertime, we didn’t have school, we could hang out all day and play- life was wonderful!

When school started again in September and Jennifer went on to 5th grade while I started 4th, we still remained best friends and still remained inseparable outside of school. I was even at her house that Fall late afternoon when my mom called- something she had never done before.  It was the night my world changed, when I was told to say goodbye to my dad while we packed the car up with brown paper grocery store bags full of our personal belongings and drove out to my grandparents’ house for a couple weeks.

Despite being miles apart for a couple weeks, despite my parents making me change schools (from private to public), despite the complete meltdown of my family and home life, Jennifer and I still remained best friends. In fact, she and her family really helped make me feel normal and loved in a time when my whole world had been rocked to its core.

But then, less than a year after my parents split, Jennifer and her family moved away. And so did our friendship.
We’d like you to explore friendship. You can talk about a current friendship or one from your past, a friend you met over kindergarten snacks or happy hour at your first job. Examine your emotional interest in the friendship and the role it plays, or played, in your life.
The word limit for this prompt is 400 words. While that may not seem like many words to devote to a friend you’ve known for thirty years, try to provide us with a snapshot that encompasses your feelings about the friendship.

*fake name


  1. Do you ever wish you could see Jennifer again, if only to tell her how much she helped you?

  2. Distance is hardest on childhood friendships, I think, since we don't have the resources to keep them up when we're small.

    I felt the mourning in your last lines, and it made me think of friendships lost.

  3. I'm so sorry you two moved apart..any chance of hunting her down?

  4. Going on vaca with another family. Isn't that the best? Love it!! I'm sorry that you and your gal pal went separate ways. Have you looked for her on Facebook? Reading everyone's stories has made me think I should look up my best neighborhood friend, Karen. I think I'm going to do it. Really.

  5. Familiar in so many ways. Friendships come and go and change so often but it's always sad whether it slipped out of your life unceremoniously or with a trunk full of paper grocery bags. One of the saddest parts of this post to me is that I wish childhood could be as happy as that one summer ALL of the time.

  6. Ugh. So hard for someone so young. I'm sorry.

  7. It's SO hard when a friend moves away. I was that friend growing up. I moved during my fourth grade year, and I never quite got over it. At my new school, I was unable to infiltrate already established friendships...and so I became more and more shy and less and less able to make friends.

    I hate to think about what happened to my friend when I moved away. :( Such a sad way to end a friendship.

    Great post! Full of feeling and easy to relate to.


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