Where I Follow, You’ll Go
Every so often in life you find a person.
This person isn’t necessarily your soul mate. Not necessarily your lover. This person is… something else.
Someone you can’t. get. rid. of.
That’s right – I’m talking about friends by default. Or maybe it just starts out that way. Initially, you might be drawn together due to circumstances beyond your control. But it doesn’t take long for the dynamic to change. You no longer simply acknowledge the other’s presence in your life – you begin to like and, Fates willing, expect it.
This isn’t just a friend or a short-lived acquaintance. You can go for months, sometimes even years, without speaking – not due to any particular reason or rift, but simply for the perfectly understandable fact that life occasionally gets in the way – and then carry on right where you left off when one of you finally makes the call.
It’s like no time passed at all.
Is there a word for these people?
I’m fortunate because my life is filled with people like this.
People like Alaina. (Remember her kitchen? I finally have the “after” pictures. They’re burning a hole in my email right now.)
Alaina and I came together out of necessity. She needed a roommate and I needed a place to live. But we stayed together, long after I moved out, through mutual co-dependency.
The emotional kind.
We lived together at college in Ohio. Her parents “adopted” me, taking me in for various holidays and family weekends since I was so far from home. I moved back to Nebraska during my sophomore year to help with some family things and take a 5,500 mile road trip. You know, normal stuff. Alaina finished school in Ohio. I moved to Georgia, finished my degree, and got married. She moved an hour away to Florida and earned her Master’s. Then Alaina moved to North Carolina and got married. I moved an hour away to North Carolina and bought a house. She stayed in North Carolina and bought a house and got pregnant. I stayed in North Carolina and…. well sorry Mom, I’m not sure I want to follow her there.
But my point is, Alaina and I take turns following each other through life’s milestones. We are meant to be. We don’t have to try. Our relationship just is.
And I have to say, when I think about it, that’s one of the best feelings in the world.
Congratulations, Alaina and Dirk! Our lives are about to change again, and I’m so happy I get to be a part of it.
*I really, really, really wanted to use the baby bump picture, but I’m fairly certain Alaina would cut me off from things like finished kitchen photos, basil mayo with sweet potato fries, “mom” and “dad” and their Tennessee Snot wine, and, most important, my soon-to-be niece or nephew. And who can live without Tennessee Snot?
**Post title taken from Collide, by Howie Day.