The First Friend I Ever Had

Ironically, the first friend I ever had was a girl, and looking back, she’s probably one of the top contenders for being the closest friend I’ve ever had, I still think about her pretty often. We were inseparable, that is, until my dad got his job at Reuters and we were separated by a good 315* miles (*Thank you Google maps). We saw each other only a couple times after that. Anyways, I am going somewhere with this, the other day I opened up my email and what I saw there made me go totally blank for a moment. Sitting there, at the top of my inbox, was one of those Facebook friend requests, with her name on it. I’m not quite sure what tearing something open would equate to in email, but that’s what I did. One of the first things I wondered was what made her think of me? The fact that she remembered me and was interested in getting back in touch was extremely uplifting after what had been a rather rotten week at school. The next thing I did was confirm the request and check out her profile, which always sounds weird, but that’s what it’s there for. One of the things that hit me was that really, she’s practically a stranger to me. All I have is vague memories from 10 years ago. Vague memories of her when she was 5 years old. I know I’m a totally different person than when I was 5, maybe a few personality traits stuck with me through the years but other than that, me at age 5 and me at age 16 are practically different people. I started going back through my old memories, trying to bring back everything I could. I can remember her house just as well, if not better, than I can remember my old house. I remember a little of the town, Frederick, but not much. The thing I remember most about it was this lake, Lake Linganore, that had this cement structure, not totally sure what it actually was, running along the edge that I used to walk along. I was really excited about the chance to catch up with her, and maybe start up a regular correspondence, but then the worrying set in. I worried about saying the wrong thing, and mostly I worried about this site, which I make a pretty big deal out of on my profile. I learned from her profile that she doesn’t exactly share my liberal atheist views, which I don’t really care about, but I worried that she might. I’m pretty sure my worries are unfounded, I have both conservative and religious friends who read this stuff and don’t hate me. Anyways, where I’m really going with this article is that it got me thinking about who I would be if I hadn’t moved. Would me and her still be friends? Would we ever have been more than just friends? Would I have ended up with the same interests, the same skills, the same opinions? Would I become essentially the same person I am today just in a different location, or would I be totally different? Would the person I am now like the person I could have become? These are all questions I really can’t answer for certain, and I don’t think anyone ever will know the answers to these types of questions, but it’s fun hypothesizing.