As a rule, friends tend to disappoint me. They do something, or don’t do something; they aren’t there when I need them to be. Sometimes it’s my fault: sometimes I just don’t find them interesting as I once did, and maybe sometimes I’m the one who fails them and I just don’t know it. Regardless, it’s taught me to take time before growing attached.

I haven’t taken as long as I usually do this time. These Mao-people . . . I started playing cards with them, I started having fun, and all of a sudden I trust them with my happiness. For a person who’s always in control of herself even if of nothing else, it was almost frighteningly sudden; but I hardly noticed, and by the time I did it was too late. I was caught. That was when I started worrying about being disappointed, left behind, cut adrift once more; but in no time at all, that stopped too, and now all I’m left with is the total joy of spending time with people who understand me, matter to me and are more fun than I get with very nearly anyone else. Certainly what I have with them I can’t have anywhere else, and I’m not afraid any more that any one of them might take it away.

But I’m going to lose it anyway. I’m going to lose them, and it’s going to hurt more than it ever has before because this time it’ll be entirely my fault. I’m going to leave them, and there’s nothing I can do about it but hope against bitter hope that they’ll understand, that they won’t feel as I feel every time it happens to me, that they won’t subtly relegate me to the outskirts of their friendship. I don’t think they would, but it might not be conscious – and if it isn’t, then I am truly doomed. I can’t convince them to change their minds if they aren’t aware of what they think, and then I’ll be left alone, crying in the dark because I’ve lost my joy and this time it’s my fault.

I tell myself to stop worrying. I tell myself I can trust them. I can, I know I can, but it’s hard to convince myself that I’m right. Part of me hisses, cruelly, “You haven’t even known them for that long. How can you say you know how they’d react? You don’t know for sure. You’re letting them down. You’re disappointing them. Of course they’ll leave you, and it serves you right.”

I do trust them. I’m just not used to giving other people this much power over me, that’s all, and part of me thinks I’m an idiot for doing so. That part of me will just have to get over it, though. The price of friendship is trust, and it’s worth the price.

The part that hurts most, though, is the part I’m resigned to. Or, well, not yet. I know I’ll have to resign myself to it, but I’m still at the phase where I beat my fists against the inevitable and refuse to back down.

Thing is, even if I’m right to trust them and they don’t let me down, I’ll still be leaving. I have to, because logic and reason tell me that I’d be better off leaving, and anyway it’s too late to stop it even if I truly wanted to. We made the decision as a family; we’d have to unmake it as a family, and that’s not going to happen. But for an entire year they’ll be together and I’ll be an ocean away. They’ve even been saying, and I don’t know how serious they are but it’s not just a joke, that after gymnasium they’d like to share an apartment. That means they’ll be together and I won’t. I know this sounds like I’m jealously wishing that they’d be torn apart by time too, but that’s not it. I just want to be here too. I want to be here as we grow closer, not watch from afar as they grow closer. I can’t bear to let go of what I have.

Logic and reason tell me that I must go, and it’s not like I have a choice anymore. But my heart is so confused.


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