I can’t believe how much I loved that girl. I would’ve died for her. I still would to this day. My heart beats for her every day. I tried so hard to do everything I could, to be the best friend I could be. The pictures are all we have left. The pictures and the memories. The memories and the vague thoughts of what it might be like if we were still attached at the hip. We always had a system. I’d ask her mom and she’d ask mine, that way it would always be yes. Her mom could never say no to me and mine couldn’t work up the nerve to say no either. I told her everything. There wasn’t a single thing that we didn’t tell the other one. I went to all of her softball games and helped her practice and she listened to everything I ever wrote and encouraged me. We went to school together every day and came home together every afternoon. We practically lived together. Friday at my house, Saturday at hers. That was the way it was supposed to be. And summer time was heaven for us. We would spend weeks on end together. We didn’t even have to pack. We had a toothbrush and bags of spare clothes at each other’s houses. We had matching cups with our names on them and matching T-shirts we wore to bed. We would spend hours just staring at the ceiling talking. We would get out every Barbie accessory I owned and set up their houses just to knock them down and start over. We fought over the remote and laughed about the ugly girls at school. I always felt so small though. I always felt like one of those “ugly girls” until I was with her. Until I could talk about them and she could reassure me that I would never be one of them. She always seemed to have my back and I had hers too. Everyone knew us as “the best friends”. In elementary school, everyone is friends with everyone, but we weren’t. We were “those two”. We made our 5th grade class jealous. They all wanted to know what our little signals across the room meant and why we laughed at the silliest things, but we weren’t telling. We had it all and we loved every minute of it. I remember lying on the top bunk of her bed, staring at a poster of the latest boy band, talking about anything and anyone. I remember drinking Dr. Pepper from shot glasses in her room, thinking we were SO cool. I remember playing dress up at 2 in the morning, pretending to be movie stars and singing into our hairbrushes to The Spice Girls. I remember playing house and eating macaroni and hotdogs for breakfast. I remember playing car wash with hose out back and sun bathing on the sidewalk. I remember sledding down that giant hill next door and drinking watery hot coco afterwards. I remember downing suicides at the dining room table and watching General Hospital for hours. I remember sitting on her mom’s bed, watching 48 hours and eating toast for no apparent reason. I remember sitting at her softball games, clutching the fence, screaming her name. And I remember that cold day when the cops flooded her home and took her and her sisters away. I remember holding her in my arms for hours, like a best friend should, letting her cry. I remember listening to her crying about how afraid she was for her sisters. I remember it all. And I miss it. I miss my best friend. I miss stealing the covers. I miss swinging in the backyard, pretending to be adventurers exploring in the jungle. I miss memorizing the lyrics to all the most popular songs together. I miss everything, but I know what’s best. I know that everything we did together will always be cherished and all the secrets we told will be kept. I know that the things that we did will be hidden in my mind and laughed about often. I know that I will never regret anything we said or anything we did. We had the time of our lives and now we’ve moved on. She’s gained her new best friend. She’s beautiful and I know she’ll be there for her. There are very few people that will stick around long enough to put up with her crap. She may be beautiful and fun to be around, but that’s not always the case. She wasn’t afraid to speak her mind, whether she was right or wrong. Her personality is loud and bubbly; therefore she tends to be loud and defiant. She’s a great girl through and through, but she sure does love to argue. She likes to pick at little things and she refuses to take the blame. But I love her. I always have. But things change and so do people. I learned a very valuable lesson from that girl; never let anyone tell you what to do. Don’t ever let anyone step on your toes or walk all over you. She still isn’t the same girl I used to be best friends with, but I’ll still be there for her when she needs me and she knows that. No, she didn’t treat me with the most respect and no, she didn’t think about what she said before she said it, but I know that we still love each other. I know who I am now and she’s still working on finding herself. We may not be best friends anymore, but we will always be sisters at heart.