Growing Up, Not Apart

I liked her room better than mine. She hated the red floor with its weird mosaic but I found it original and nice to look at.

I can still picture the two-toned blue walls and the bird tapestry.

We spent so much time in there together, dreaming, talking, envisioning the lives we would have as grown-ups.

I don’t remember what we imagined so I can’t say if any of it came true. Except for one thing.

We saw our friendship existing outside of the confines of our young naive years.

If we planted a tree the day we met, it would be tall. Old and solid.

People say that relationships are like plants, they must be tended to and given regular attention to make them grow.

We never really talk about what we’re supposed to do once the plant gets enormous. Once its foliage is rich and vibrant, its flowers blossoming.

Childhood friends are special. Not only are we rooting ourselves in this life on earth as we grow up to discover it but we go through it together. We chose to plant our feet on this soil with this other person. We come to share a common grounding in life. We support each other for years and one day we realize the roots we made for ourselves on this planet are interwoven.

If our friendship is a plant, then its roots are definitely tangled up together deep in the earth.

What we see above the rich soil is nothing compared to what lies below.

Our roots may be intermingled but it doesn’t mean the tree will flourish forever. Leaves turned brown overtime, some fell to the ground. Over the years we’ve trimmed some branches. Others grew out.

 It’s crooked and an undisciplined mess of greenery but it’s alive and standing.

Somehow we made it happen.

Sometimes I wonder if I’ll have the courage to take care of it as long as I live but when I look at it, tall and majestic, I know I wouldn’t have it any other way.

It’s one of those trees that always provides you with shade when you need it, whose leaves swishing in the wind make you feel peaceful and quiet inside.

And most importantly, if you climb on its branches you can see the stars up close.

 

*Photo Credit: Bruno Cordioli flickr Creative Commons 2.0

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