I wouldn’t call us close friends. We had gone to school together our entire childhood. I remember her easygoing attitude, the big grin and contagious laugh. We had mutual friends, sat in some of the same classes and attended a lot of sleepovers together. Still, as adults our lives went in different directions and I didn’t give a second thought to us crossing paths again someday.
Until we did. In 2006, I saw Julie* for the first time in several years. She was one of two classmates who showed up to pay their respects at my dad’s funeral. They weren’t there for me necessarily. In recent years, they’d actually gotten to know my dad. Although years apart in age, they were part of the same party crowd.
Julie showed me a lot of support that day. I remember several times she came up to me with a hug and kind words. It was the Julie I remembered. Laid back but sincere. Knowing how our stories intersected, I was unsure of the proper response. The hard partying that forged a friendship between Julie and my dad had all but torn my family apart. A failed marriage after 25 years; the half-truths, all-out lies and broken promises. It was the effects of partying that had caused his untimely death. What was I to do with that reality?
Click here to head on over to The Mudroom Blog and keep reading about how I said a hard goodbye to my friend from back home.