I am a high school student, and I belong to what you would call a clique. The girls and I are good for each other; we are not one of those dumb cliques that come in last in class. We are the top five students in our class, we study together, we play together, and we have the same friends. The clique consists of five girls; Olive, Amy, Sheila, Tina and myself Lola. The focus of this story is Olive and I. We were born in the same month; our mothers are besties, we live in the same neighbourhood. We officially signed the best friends forever pledge, but Olive is becoming a concern. Something is off with her; she is changing.
Ever since we were five years, we hung out at the school playground every weekend, we would buy ice cream on the way home from school, and we had sleepovers at least once every month. We told the same jokes, and we both decided to be doctors and study at the same university. But it’s no longer her dream; Olive has a sudden love for theatre arts, she watched a play last year and got hooked. She was the one who brought the doctor idea; it wasn’t even me, I know I can be bossy, but not to Olive. Why on earth is she changing her mind now?
She joined the drama club last month, I have been working hard on adapting, but her daily schedule has changed, I don’t fit in anymore. She even has drama practice on weekends, so no weekend hangouts. Yesterday was the end of the month, and we didn’t have any sleepover. The school drama night is by the corner, so Olive is always at practice. Am I overreacting? Of course, she has to give her all to this if she is to have an acting career, senior year is halfway gone, she has some catching up to do. I would be more patient.
Today was the beginning of my many doubts; I decided to put in more effort with Olive. I waited behind today for drama practice, an hour after school. The clique didn’t stay back with me; this week was our movie night. I had told them I would come with Olive. Ten minutes to the end of practice, I went and bought us ice cream and waited to surprise her. She came out with Lisa, a girl who hates me; they were both laughing at something. For a second, it looked like Olive betrayed me and became friends with someone I dislike; but I shrugged it off and called Olive’s attention. She had this guilty look [no, it must be my mind]; she took the ice cream, and we went to the movies. Lisa had this smug look on her face.
It’s twenty minutes to the end of the movie, and all I can see is the replay of them laughing, the guilt on Olive’s face and the smug look on Lisa’s face. Urgh! Shake it off Lola, Olive would never betray you, I need to get a grip. This night was for us to have fun. My birthday is next week, and I won’t let any of this spoil it. Olive is my friend, and she is discovering herself, I am sure that’s all there is. I would be very supportive and cheer her on.
“Hey girls, guess who is going to Wonderland next week?” “Yaaay! Lola, is your birthday party in Wonderland? I thought there was no party“, ” It was a surprise, but my little brother spilt the beans. Hey Olive, what’s wrong, are you alright?” Olive has that look on her face, and I am sure she is going to break my heart. “We have a drama camp next week Lola, I told the director that my best friend was turning sixteen, but she told me as a new member, missing the first drama camp would mean I am out of the club, I am so sorry.” Lola Be Supportive! “That’s fine Olive, I know how much you want this club, the girls would be there, at least make sure you make a video call that day” “Thanks Lola, I promise I would make the call, you know I love you.“
Being supportive is harder than I thought, I never knew it would mean having my best friend absent from my sixteenth birthday. I have been holding my phone all day, no call yet, I should distract myself, overthinking this would give me an ulcer. I still have the rest of the clique here, and they are doing everything to make my day very grand. Dad told me I could start driving lesson; mum bought me a new dress. Olive also sent my gift through the girls, a practice surgical set, we saw it online, it was quite expensive. Olive knows how to move my heart. Her video call would make today perfect.
It’s noon on the day after my birthday; Olive still hasn’t called. Maybe she got super busy or super tired. Perhaps the director caught her trying to make a call and seized her phone, or she lost her voice and can not talk. No, wait that her running towards me. “Hey Lola, I just got home from camp, I ran all the way here.” She is here, nothing else matters. “My bestie is home, come and give me a hug“, “I am sorry, I should have called, my battery went flat, and I couldn’t charge it till now.” Why didn’t I think her battery could have died. “I knew you had a good reason, and I loved your gift, the girls it to gave me” “Thank God you love it, I am sorry for not calling Lola.”
My friendship with Olive continued in that manner till graduation, she missed a lot of special days, but she was always sorry, that began to put a strain on our friendship. At some point, I stopped waiting for her; I got involved in other things. I came to an understanding that she was on a new path, and mine was different from hers. Our tastes also became different; she stopped eating ice cream to stay in shape for her plays; I always eat ice cream. She started going to the gym; I started going to the library. She also became friends with Lisa, not to spite me, but Lisa is the best drama student, it was wise of her to get closer to her. We still love each other, but we rarely hangout anymore, we talk once in a while, but we are on obviously very different paths.
Culture is the way of life of a people; it is shared values that make you stay in a relationship with others. If your paths end up splitting, the relationship might break up. Remember, it may not always mean that the other person hates you; it may only imply that it was time to move on. This story should help you understand the different broken relationships you may have had in the past; it may not have broken because you were hated, it may have been a change in one of the two of you. Culture remains something that can be learned and unlearned, ensure the one you learn is the right culture. Learn also to preserve your culture; your values should not change because of others.