I Believe in Keeping Old Friends

Emily - Pearl River, New York
Entered on April 7, 2009
Age Group: Under 18
  • Listen to This I Believe on RadioPublic

  • Podcasts

    Sign up for our free, weekly podcast of featured essays. You can download recent episodes individually, or subscribe to automatically receive each podcast. Learn more.

  • FAQ

    Frequently asked questions about the This I Believe project, educational opportunities and more...

  • Top Essays USB Drive

    This USB drive contains 100 of the top This I Believe audio broadcasts of the last ten years, plus some favorites from Edward R. Murrow's radio series of the 1950s. It's perfect for personal or classroom use! Click here to learn more.

Now that I think about it, I wish I could redo my three middle school years because realizing I left out one of my best life-long friend just kills me. I believe people should always keep their old friends, no matter what age they are, what new friends you make later on, or the obstacles that may challenge you from staying in touch with them.

Before I went to middle school my “old friend” and I hung out all the time because we grew up together as neighbors and our families are very close. But because there is a two-year age difference between us, I started middle school without her. I used middle school as a time of meeting and hanging out with new people from different elementary schools. I also joined my first travel soccer team. With these new events in my life, I barely ever saw who I then could consider is my “old friend.”

As time passed, I became even closer to my new friends. I didn’t even bother to make an effort to see my “old friend”. I think I did not call her was because I was afraid of what my new friends would think if they knew I was hanging out with someone younger. They might have thought I was lame and I didn’t want to take a chance of losing my new friends. It kills me now when I think about how much I hurt her by leaving her out of my life. She would write me letters asking why I wouldn’t call her anymore and I would always say the same excuse, “Sorry, I’m busy.” It is hard to forgive myself for that.

As I grew older and matured a little more, I realized why I was so close with my “old friend”. Not only for reasons like being into the same sports and activities but for what she gave me. She didn’t give me any physical object but what she did give me was a feeling. This feeling is hard to describe but it’s kind of like a positive “I don’t care feeling.” I don’t care what other people think when I hang out with her because of the age difference. She is so down to earth, kind, and funny that just I love hanging out with her.

I am so lucky that she forgave me for what I did in the past. We now hang out a lot more and so do our families. Sometimes we go skiing together, go out to eat, or just enjoy the regular game night. We now consider ourselves sisters.

I think everyone should keep old friends no matter what the age difference is and no matter how long it’s been since they’ve seen each other. I think if an old friend forgives you, just as mine did, then you can consider each other true friends, not just old friends.