They go back with us a long time. Don’t they?
These are the names from the neighborhood. They are the friends from the old days. They are the kids from the block that we grew up with.
These are the people that knew us way back when.
They know things that no one else knows.
They were there for the sleepovers.
This is back when we were young enough to build blanket forts and tents with everything in the living room. We’d watch scary movies and try to stay up all night. We’d watch Saturday Night Live, back when it was still funny.
Do you understand what I am trying to say?
I am talking about the people that were around at the time when some of our friends wore braces on their teeth.
They were there when you lost your baby teeth.
These are the people that were there for the funny times and the crazy times. They saw the best and the worst of us.
I am talking about the people that were there when literally everything was falling apart, but hey, thank God for friends, right?
Thank God for them because they are the ones that were there when nobody else was—and they sprung up, almost instinctively, as if they knew you needed them because this is what friends do.
They are there when you need them.
At least the real ones are. They arrive at perfect times. And they smile. And they do this like it was their job too, which it is because friendship is equally a responsibility as it is a blessing.
Please believe me on this.
A friend is not there because of what you have for them. More so, a friend is there because of what you are to them.
These are the real friends.
They are the ones that know you. They love you, and above all, they accept you as you are, without any explanation.
Then again, real friends do not need an explanation.
They don’t need them because they already understand.
There are no friends like old friends.
I say this often enough; however, I say this because my words are true.
They are the people that go back with you throughout the years. They are the ones that were there when you played little league.
Or maybe it was the times you remember at the park. Or maybe there were there the nights in the summertime, back when we were all young and swore we would be this young forever.
The real ones are the rare ones. They are the people that breathe out when you need it just so you can breathe in.
They are the ones that feel with you (and not for you).
There is no thought about status or position, there is only friendship.
There is a word we used to call each other.
The word is “Boys!”
They were my friends. They were the Calvary. They were the ride or die, good or bad, “If I’m with you, I’m with you,” kind of people.
With all my heart, I love them deeply.
We could be miles apart, or better yet, we can be decades apart, and yet still, the sense of familiarity and understanding cannot, will not, and does not ever go away—at least not when it comes to the real ones—and certainly not the best ones, my friends, my boys, and my everlasting chosen family.
I can say that I know who I have in my corner. I can say that I know who to depend on. I can say that I have old friends and I am fortunate to have new friends and best friends and above all, I am fortunate to have people in my life that I consider to be this above all else: My friend.
Real friendship can never die.
Real friends are lifelong. They are ever-long and ongoing.
And so be it.
Real friends are alive beyond life itself; therefore, same as life, our friendships need to be nurtured with every need that is needed by all living things.
Love is always love but love is not always the same thing amongst all of us. Love is above all the one thing that links us from one life to the next.
Love is not a bond that can ever be broken nor can the door to love ever close because there is no door.
There’s only love.
Therefore if I love you then I love you regardless to any change, or alteration of life or life’s circumstances.
And thus is my love, a responsibility, a trust, an obligation of heart, which is not to be misunderstood as a burden because love is not a burden.
Not at all.
Love is only a living thing that needs air to breathe, food to fill its belly, and warmth to cure it’s bones. This is love.
As for the love of our friends:
They are there with you throughout the ages. They are there to celebrate and yet, they are there to grieve whenever the times may call for it.
I have this idea sometimes of all of us old friends getting together. A sort of reunion, so to speak, but no.
It’s different now (because we’re older, I guess).
It would be a memorial. It would be a ceremony.
Who knows? Maybe?
It would be nice though. And we could all laugh. We could all talk about the times when we were crazy little kids, running around the neighborhood, and we swore we knew what we were doing.
Prospect Park was our place. I have this picture which I will share here. This bench saw a lot of good times and crazy times and even some bloody times.
And I admit it.
I am caught up in a moment of nostalgia.
(This is for you, Jeff!)
I am counting on my fingers and running out when thinking about the people I miss. And more than anything, I am counting my blessings because above all, I am blessed because I can say, “I knew them all.”
Also, I am blessed with you, my very special friend. I am blessed to know you. I am blessed to have you.
And furthermore, I am blessed to love you and be loved in returned because without you, I am alone—and believe me when I tell you this.
I don’t ever want to be alone.
I don’t want to live alone and I especially do not want to die alone.
Then again, I don’t have to worry about that.
It is a nice day today. The sun is shining. The wind is blowing. The moment is quiet. And I am grateful. Then again, of course I am grateful because I will always have you