Changed

People change around you everyday whether you realize it or not. Keep perspective.

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1. The Little Things

I watched from afar as they laughed in that way only someone in their clique would know how. I'd know. I was there not  two weeks ago.

It began when middle school ended. I could feel her, my best friend, changing right in front of me.

It was like updating your computer. You don't know why the updates are necessary, just that they happen, and you don't even realize the changes as they're usually barely noticeable. At first I noticed the superficial things.

She got an iPhone, I don't think much of it-- I have one too. She changed her hair. First a few highlights. Then some more. Then going to a lighter shade or blond altogether.

Again, I attributed the change to our upcoming entrance to high school. To a new phase in our lives.

Then came the mental changes. She stopped responding to my texts. Made up excuses to not hang out. let someone take my spot at our regular lunch table. It took me a while to catch on that maybe, just maybe, I was doing something wrong myself. The problem as me, not them.

I decided to sit at a different table one day. To see what it'd be like. Then I went back. This happened almost every day for those two weeks. I considered myself the lunchroom nomad.

Soon enough, I realized that other people were taking my seat. People who I don't know, but are apparently her new group of friends.

New friends, new school perhaps?

I remembered our pact we'd made just a few months earlier. We had sworn to each other on  the holy grail of all teenagers--Seventeen magazine--that we wouldn't change, no matter what.

Guess the holy-ness of it didn't mean much to her as it meant to me.

 

Looking back there were more obvious signs. Her insistence to begin wearing caked-on make up, the ever-tightening clothing and the too-short short-shorts that kept being hemmed up. 

I've always been one to believe in the best in people and give the benefit of the doubt until the last possible shred of credibility was left to believe. It's both a blessing and a curse I've decided.

And so, when it finally began too seep through the cracks in my thick skull, I began to distance myself from her. From the girl who I knew one day and the girl who changed overnight to a stereotypical high-school freshman.

We're still cordial to one another. Formalities are still shown as we pass each other in the halls. Whether a scowl, eye-roll combo happens when she passes me as well happens I'll probably never know.

I still wonder sometimes, as I sit nearby watching the laughter and the silly small talk over sour patch gummy bears being shared with new best friends. Replacing me as if I never even existed in her life. As though I came and I went, and was replaced before I could say goodbye.

I wonder, if she ever thinks about me. If she ever even considers texting me back, as our last conversation ended unfinished. 

Every now and then I consider sitting with them, back at the old table, and trying to get back into her life. Back to the nights of parties and late-night football games, and monthly mall crawls. But then, I'm jarred back to reality as my new friends ask me to hang out this weekend, or actually make conversation, unlike everyone at the old table.

Maybe sometimes change is for the better. Even if it isn't solicited, it'll still show up on your doorstep. Disguised as who know what, it can hit you like the first snowball fight of the year or it can hit you like a jolt of electricity bringing you back to perspective.

But is change really what you want? Or what you need?

I guess you can never really know. You just have to believe that everything that happens, happens for a reason.

That reason is up to you.

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