Back in the day, we rocked a playlist on Napster like you wouldn’t believe. We binged on Sex and the City and MTV’s Dismissed before binge-watching was even a thing. We wallpapered our living room with inside jokes. We had a breakfast place. When someone was leaving town, every single one of us rode to the airport to see her off, and we all picked her up when she came back home. We sometimes did this dressed as giant M&Ms. It didn’t make sense to anyone else — it didn’t always make sense even to us — but then again, it didn’t have to.
The beautiful thing about these friendships is that part of us will always be frozen in time, back in that dorm room, listening to Indigo Girls, clad in overalls. Part of us will always be walking back from campus, making big plans, pausing at the library to watch the sun set against an indigo sky. These friendships are rooted in that special age where you open your eyes to the world for the very first time, and as far as the future is concerned, anything seems possible.
Having said that, we cannot deny the passage of time. In the almost fifteen years since our last library walk, even I have to acknowledge that things somehow, inexplicably, continue to happen. They happen on a daily basis and miles away. Still, throughout the years, these are the only people who can adequately advise, who can effectively comfort, who can see clearly. They celebrate and they cradle. They hold a harsh light up to life, and they remind me of who I am when I have all but forgotten.
And when things happen to them, I feel it deeply, as deeply as if it had happened to me — because in a very fundamental way, it has.
I may not know my roommates’ comings and goings anymore. I may not know what they had for breakfast or what show they’re currently binge-watching, what they’re doing next Saturday night or even where exactly they work these days.
But if anything happens to them, I will go to wherever they are, I will take whatever it is, and I will put that thing on me. I will stare into that indigo sky with them and I will fight it fiercely.