Looking back on ten years of friendship
After I graduated high school, I was pretty stoked to say goodbye to nearly everything associated with those 4 years. Waking up at 5 am, ableist teachers and a truly horrible PI room for disabled students, kids who ignored me from day one but then acted like we were best friends on the last day. I promise I am fully aware of how bitter I sound right now. I just really hated that time of my life. Pretty much every minute of it.
The only good thing that really came out of the whole experience is the one friend I still have a relationship with – Sarah. Somehow we’ve been friends now for about 10 years. Just typing that kinda freaks me out, to be honest. Yikes, can’t think about my age, gotta keep writing.
So anyway, to celebrate how long we’ve been friends, we decided to each write a post answering a few questions (yes, this is cheesy and I have no shame) and then see how our answers compare. Plus, it’s just a cute way to gush about each other.
How we met
We both spent a lot of time in the PI classroom, which we hated. It was basically a class for the students with physical disabilities who weren’t mainstreamed. Sarah and I went out to classes all day, but we’d meet up there for our breaks and for lunch.
I remember meeting her one day during lunch pretty early in my sophomore year. We were always at the same table so it was just a matter of time before we started talking. We also were forced to take the same (useless) PE class so that was always an hour of us goofing off.
I think my first actual memory of Sarah didn’t even involve me. It was one of the teachers asking her all about her trip to Hawaii. My gross jealousy took over, but I could still tell she was just as annoyed with everyone around us as I was so I was pretty sure we’d get along.
The first thing that comes to mind for me is the days when we’d have to spend our PE class on the track. Why they thought the girl in a power wheelchair would benefit from doing laps for an hour beats me, but Sarah and I used it as basically a free period. I’d have her hold onto my armrest and I’d just pull her along. Every time I think of those days, I just remember us cracking up and making fun of how ridiculous our lives were at the time.
I also loved waiting for our busses together. We got out of last period super early, like sometimes 40 minutes early, to get to the bus ramp and loaded before the last bell rang and that place flooded with kids. It was definitely a bit excessive, but none of us were complaining. So, Sarah and I would meet up at the PI room and then head to the ramp together where we’d wait together for a while before getting on our separate busses. It wasn’t anything special or exciting, but it made my otherwise miserable days a little more bearable knowing I had a friend waiting for me at the end of the day.
3 things I associate with Sarah
- Coffee – Because we’ve had a lot of coffee dates and she loves it a little too much.
- The mall – Because it was always our easy go to when we wanted to hang out. Free, accessible, air conditioned, and close enough we could get dropped off for a few hours.
- Fourth of July – Because her birthday is the day after, so I always think of her when the holiday is coming up and start trying to think of gift ideas. She’s definitely one of the hardest people to shop for.
What we learned from each other
I’ve learned a lot from Sarah, like the right way to fall. My mom has panicked more times than I can count thinking that Sarah was about to hit the pavement. But she always just laughs it off and says ‘it’s okay, guys, I know how to fall.’ It never makes my mom feel any better, but hey, at least one of us is relaxed.
Sarah is probably the strongest person I know, having gone through more surgeries and painful experiences than anyone I’ve ever met. It’s a rare occasion when she complains because her 10 is probably my 25 when it comes to pain levels. And even when she does complain, which I encourage from her, she’s usually still smiling and laughing.
The other thing about her is that she’s unendingly loyal and generous. If I called her up right now and asked for $100, she’d probably just say yes and the only question she’d ask would be ‘are you okay?’. I’ve watched her give people more second chances than they ever deserved from her but it’s never changed who she is. We’ve both leaned on each other when dealing with things like doctors and insurance battles. The fact that we’re both disabled is a big part of our friendship. We can go to each other with things that no one else really gets.
Future friendship goals
Since neither of us can drive and we have to coordinate with both of our families to make plans to hang out, it can get kind of complicated. But when we’re both bored and texting, we make all kinds of plans and think about stuff we’d love to do in the future. Back when I was in college, we’d Skype while I’d work on homework. Except, it always turned into me forgetting my assignment and we’d start looking for apartments and daydream about being roommates.
As for more realistic goals? I know we’d love to have a Disney day together. She’s always said she doesn’t want to meet characters. So obviously, I’d drag her to meet characters to show her how fun and cute it can be.
We’d also love to collaborate on something bigger than just a post here or there. The other day, we actually met up for coffee to start brainstorming project ideas! We’re nowhere near actually starting on anything, but it was fun to throw some ideas out.
Favorite posts from each other
Sarah’s blog is similar to mine in the sense that she talks about her disability, mental health, and other random topics that interest her. But because she has such a different disability than mine, I find her perspective on things to be really interesting.
She’s been dealing with chronic migraines lately, so I loved that she wrote about how that impacts her writing. She’s also pretty passionate about fitness, which I definitely can’t relate to, and writes about different routines, body confidence, and accessibility relating to exercise.
She posts regularly so if you’re looking for a blogger with Spina Bifida, she’s your girl!
Once you hit 10 years of friendship, I think you’re pretty much stuck with each other.
I still can’t wrap my head around the fact that high school was so long ago. When we hang out, sometimes it still feels like we’re just two kids who hate going to class. I’m excited to see what’s next for each other, and I’m so proud to call Sarah my friend. If you’d like to see her answers, make sure you check out her blog because she’ll be publishing her half later today! Give her some love while you’re there.