My favorite stranger


My favorite stranger.

Faces crowded me in an airless room, my anxiety cowering behind me like a child faced with a stranger. 

Knots in my throat only tightened as more smiling faces passed me by. Inhaling and deflating lungs could not hide me from social interaction. Lacking in a willingness to socialize was an understatement. Bitter loneliness bit at my teeth and toes as I stood still, praying that the world would stop for just a second. Now, looking around wearily I meet with the most whimsical eyes. 

Electrifying blue that shifted the whole world for just a moment, a halo of innocent gold wrapped around her piercing pupils. No one could escape her big happy gaze without a smile. 

Sunshine girl walked up to me with a small, shy smile. 

Just then, my brain gave me flowers in my belly. Ones that seemed to sprout as her lips released words of kindness and welcome. Short auburn locks traveled just below her neck; it reminded me of sprouting tree trunks in mid-spring when Mother Nature used to run her fingers through my hair.

Nothing felt as perfect as laying in bed with her eating trail mix and watching horror movies as we did. Laughter filled our lungs with freedom and flowers; the same flowers we danced in after school. 

No matter the cheap fluorescent lights that flicker behind us or the times we will spit venom out of our lips, iridescence will burst through the seams of our hearts and splatter the walls with promise and bliss.  

Bells sound in my ears as my closed eyes open again and see the empty yet once crowded room. Rosy blush makes its way to my cheeks as I shake my head and allow my clunky boots to walk out of the chipping door frame and into the corridor of a colorless and almost lifeless hallway. 

Until everything changed and life seemed to have happened, splitting us apart like cracked glass, we were falling, falling from each other. I missed her. I missed the memories of laughter and late-night phone calls, talking about nothing, but it meant absolutely everything to me. 

However, as the saying goes, “If you love something, set it free. If it comes back, it’s yours…”

Before I knew it, the flowers in the garden of friendship that had died began to sprout again. I was flabbergasted by their beauty and strength, the same strength that we got back. Again to this day, she is my best friend.