You’ve heard that people don’t stay friends after high school. And that’s not entirely true because some people do. It’s hard, but some friends will make it through graduation, exams and formal and come out the other side still strong.
But for most of us we’ll say goodbye. Uni, work, travel and life will get in the way. We’ll lose touch and stop seeing each other. Going from being with someone six hours a day, five days a week to figuring out your own plan is a hard transition to make.
You’ll say goodbye to the late night dnms and maccas runs. To the laughing fits where you’re giggling so hard it hurts and tears start running down your cheeks. To the walks home from school and hours spent lazing around at each other’s house. Gone will be the days of getting drunk at 18ths and sleepovers. You won’t be able to look across the room at each other and burst out laughing at some inside joke and study sessions in the library the night before the exam won’t happen. You’ll say goodbye to overanalysing a boy’s text and sending through screenshots whenever you have a fight.
You won’t do it on purpose. You’ll promise each other that you’ll be best friends even after graduation. Maybe, for a little while you will. You’ll make the effort to see each other and take time out of your regular life to make it work. Maybe.
But eventually, you’ll get busy. Work will get hectic or you’ll have a million uni assignments at once. Maybe you’ll go away on a gap year and come back without an urge to catch up. You will meet new people who make you laugh and take up your time and so will your high school best friend. You’ll try and organise a time to catch up but your schedules will always clash and it’s easier to just say you’ll do it later. ‘We should catch up soon!’ becomes the opening line of every conversation but you never see their face.
Later never comes and you go weeks or months without properly talking to each other. You won’t message each other every day and when something happens- good or bad- you’ll reach out to someone else. Messages will be left on read until you get a chance to reply to them properly but then you’ll get sidetracked with something else. Until one day you’ll do something small that reminds you of them- maybe you’ll be cleaning your room and find a photo of you two in Year 7 or the song that you two used to sing together will come on the radio- and realise it’s been months since you heard from them. You won’t know what’s happening with their life and they won’t know what’s going on in yours.
It won’t be your traditional break up with slammed doors and shouting. You won’t be able to yell your frustrations or vent it over angry texts. You two will drift, until you just stop talking. It’s a harsh truth but it’s a part of growing up, some people won’t be there until the end. And the worst part? There won’t even be any hard feelings; just a dull ache that reminds you that you miss them.
But despite all the heart ache and the nights where you wish you could call them and pretend nothing had changed since high school, you’ll realise that this is a part of growing up. You’ll make new memories with new people. You’ll find new inside jokes and spend weekends with people that you didn’t grow up with. You’ll share your stories with brand new faces and make friendships that actually will last a lifetime. Some of the new people you meet will be by your side when you graduate uni or get a promotion at work or decide to finally go travelling. Saying goodbye to your high school friends is hard- but it means you get to say hello to the people that will mean the most to you in the years to come.
header photo: disposablediieary