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True Friendship This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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     As the night continued, our conversation grew deeper. Soon, we were both in tears. It wasn’t the words that affected me, it was the way he cared. I could feel the love from his heart. I never had the chance to express myself like this to anyone before. Erik was different. He looked inside and understood my pain, making the extra effort to show that he cared.

The world felt as though it were caving in on me and nothing I did made a difference. I tried to hide, but the smallest worries found me. I tried to run, but I could never get away. When I tried to ignore the problem, I only found myself thinking about it.

I knew I had to deal with my emotions somehow and searched for someone who cared. It was a process that seemed too hard, but I stepped out of my box and expressed myself to those around me. It wasn’t until that night, though, that I thought of someone who might just be able to give me the love I needed.

It was a warm summer night with the sun just setting. My family was away. I picked up the phone and dialed.

“Erik, it’s Mandy,” I said.

“Hey, Mandy! How are you?”

I had to let him know how I really felt. I took a deep breath. “Not so good,” I replied.

“What’s wrong, Mandy?”

I felt the tears start, first slowly, then faster. I didn’t answer.

“Mandy? Come on, talk to me. Something is hurting you, and I need you to tell me,” Erik said, concerned.

“Can you come over? I need someone to talk to,” I managed.

“Yeah, I’ll be there in a minute, okay?”

Erik rushed to my house. As soon as I opened the door, he hugged me, showing how much he cared. We sat on the swing set as he held me close.

“Mandy,” he said softly, “what’s going on?”

“Oh, Erik, I can’t take it anymore,” I said in tears.

“I’m here for you, honey. Tell me, what’s hurting?”

I knew then in my heart that this person, this friend, really cared. I not only saw and heard that he cared, but I felt it, too. I told Erik what was going on in my life and I wasn’t afraid to cry because I knew he wouldn’t mind.

“You shouldn’t be treated like that. No one should,” he said in tears, hugging me. “Mandy, I love you and you may never understand how much I really care about you. You mean a lot to me. Please remember that,” Erik reassured me.

“Erik, if I ever lose you,” I paused. “I don’t even want to think about that!”

“You won’t lose me. I promise.”

I lost track of the time that we spent talking but I remember the night seemed to last forever. I will never forget that time Erik not only told me that he cared and loved me, but showed it. That’s what I call a true friend.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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meredith P. said...
Apr. 9, 2009 at 2:20 pm
omg.im sorry that the bad part happened in your life.but im happy that you an erik are so close.
 
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