It’s weird to think that it has been 2 years. It has been 2 years since I’ve seen my Mom, my best friend Katelyn, and everyone in our small Arizona town. But most importantly, it’s been 2 years since I’ve seen him.
Studying at the Youth Music Administration School (YMAS) was absolutely amazing. It was a 2 year program for Juniors and Seniors in high school. I kept in contact with my anal Mom through e-mail, and Katelyn and I texted a lot. It was an amazing experience that I wouldn’t trade for anything. But now, Junior and Senior year is gone and I’m already 18 (almost 19), and I’m spending the summer back at my home town before I go off to college.
You see, I’m a band geek. I play trumpet, saxophone, tuba, and snare. And If I do say so myself, I play all of them really well. Otherwise I wouldn’t have been accepted into this elite music school.
But of course, as I now am driving back home from the airport, the first thing that pops into my head is Carter.
I can’t believe it’s been practically 2 years since we’ve even spoken. And I used to remember a time when I thought I couldn’t live without him.
Carter and I were best friends since birth. Our families were good friends, so when we were born, I guess they wanted us to be friends. We grew up together. I know that kid inside out, and upside down. And it wasn’t long before I was in love with him. It happened when I was 15, I remember. I remember realizing how much I loved him and how much I wanted to be in his arms. And before I left for my 2 year study, I knew I had to tell him how I felt. I just needed him to know. I was terrified though, because we had been best friends for so long; I just didn’t want to ruin that. So I told him I had feelings for him, and we kissed. And let me tell you, I can still feel the sparks from that kiss. It was so romantic and I didn’t want to stop kissing him. That made me fall even more in love. But we both agreed that 2 years not seeing each other would be hard, so we put our relationship on hold for the time being, and he promised he would keep in touch. We probably e-mailed each other for about 3 months or so while I was away, and then he just stopped. And he wouldn’t answer me back anymore. So many times I tried to call him but he never answered. I was so heart broken. He was the only guy I was ever certain I really loved. And then a week later my Mom told me through e-mail that “Carter’s new girlfriend was just the cutest” and that’s when I stopped trying.
Never had I been more heartbroken in my whole entire life. I thought that he would wait for me, and then after I came back from the 2 years, we would get together. I thought we were worth waiting for. But I guess not to him. We never kept in contact ever again after that. For the whole entire 2 years, not once did he e-mail or call. How could we go from being best friends, to being cold turkey nothing? I’ll never know.
I was so comfortable around him. I felt I could tell him anything, and he said I was the only person he ever trusted with all of his secrets and times when he’s needed advice. I’ll never understand why he had to go throw all that away.
But I’m so afraid to see him when I get back. He’ll probably still have the cute boyish smile and that shaggy hair and those eyes. And I know he’ll be the same guy I fell in love with. Always so caring, and always there for me. I would give anything to even just have him as my best friend again.
My stomach churns thinking about the fact that I’ll probably have to see him today. I may even have to talk to him. 2 years is a long time though, so maybe he’s single. But what does that matter to me? 2 years without speaking to me clearly says he wants nothing to do with me.
Ugh, I don’t know. I overanalyze things all the time.
I pulled into the driveway of my house, which looked newly paved. I wondered how long ago Mom got that done.
The whole town looked a little nicer and cleaner as I had drove through it. I felt like it had been 50 years since I’d been there, not 2.
And even though going to that music school was absolutely amazing, I’ve really missed home. And as I got out of my car and saw my Mom running down the driveway with tears of joy falling down her cheeks, I realized that I had missed home more than I thought.
“You’re home, Laurie!” She screamed and we embraced in a hug.
She looked older now, and it was weird for me. Gray hairs were now starting to show up on the back of her long beautiful brown hair. I didn’t like seeing her older. I didn’t want her to grow old without me.
“Mom!” I said and released our hug so I could get a better look at her, “You’ve changed so much!”
“You too!” She said with a giggle and studied me, “You actually have boobs.”
“Mom!” I groaned. She would say something like that.
My Mom is really laid back like that. She loves to make fun of me for my tininess. I’m pretty petite. I’m only 5’3. She never lets me live that down.
“Why don’t you come in? We can get your bags out of the trunk later,” She asked and then snickered a little, “There is someone I’d like you to meet.”
Oh no. What happens if she got yet another boyfriend? My Mom is divorced, but she is always looking to date. And sometimes that can be really annoying.
Or what if it’s Carter?! What if I walk in, and Carter is just sitting at my kitchen table. I probably wouldn’t even know what to do. I’m just so angry at him for forgetting about me for the past 2 years, but at the same time I know that if I see that smile of his….
I walked into our white farm house with my Mom to see a guy who looked about 17 or 18 sitting on the couch in the living room reading a book. I had never seen him before in my whole entire life. He probably never lived in Brushbrook City, Arizona before then. He couldn’t have.
He had dirty blonde curly hair, and kind of a skinny body type.
I nose scrunched in disgust. I swear, if my Mom introduces this guy who looks like he’s my age to be her boyfriend….I’ll….
“This is Robbie, the foreign exchange student from Scotland,” Mom said with a smile.
Robbie looked up and smiled at me, “Hi. Your Mom’s told me a lot about you. It’s nice to meet you, Laurie.”
He had a faint accent, which I thought was really cool. But other than that, he seemed like a typical American. He shoes were a brand I had never seen before, but other than that, he looked completely American.
“Nice to meet you too,” I said and nodded at him, but then turned to Mom, “You got a foreign exchange student because…..?”
“He was staying with the Brecks down the street, but they moved, and so he didn’t have any place to go, so I decided to take him in. He goes back to Scotland at the end of the summer.”
“Oh,” I said suddenly understanding.
It would be weird having him around, and especially since I don’t know him but overall I’m just glad he’s not my Mom’s new boyfriend.
“Your Mom told me you play many instruments,” Robbie commented.
I looked over at him and tried to be conversational, “I only play 4 instruments. It really isn’t that much. To be a band director you have to know how to play all of them.”
“And that’s what she wants to be when she goes to college in a couple months,” Mom said oh-so-proudly, “My daughter, the band director!”
I rolled my eyes. She acted like I wanted to become a doctor or something. I think sometimes she supports me and music just because she knows that Dad never did. And she knows that how he was such a jerk to me about it really hurt me. Sometimes I wonder if she really even wants me to become a band director.
“Your daughter, the geek,” I said and laughed a little, “All I need is some glasses, some acne, and you can just call me Ugly Betty.”
Mom smiled, “When I saw you walk up the driveway, all I could think was ‘Oh my gosh she looks like a mature and beautiful woman’. But now I realize that you are still have that same dorky personality that you had 2 years ago.”
I sighed. What can I say, she knows me.
“Oh, and that’s not the only person I wanted you to meet,” Mom said, “Go up to your room.”
“Yeah,” Mom said and smiled.
My stomach did a flip as I tried to guess in my head who could be up there. I walked up the stairs and walked slowly to my room door which was closed.
I took a deep breath in as I grabbed the door knob. Here goes nothing.
I opened the door and there stood Katelyn.
Immediately Katelyn and I screamed and hugged each other. I hadn’t seen my own best friend in 2 years, so I don’t really think anyone could expect me to be quiet about it. I’ve missed her so much. We’ve done so much crazy shit together, it’s insane. I love that girl to death!
“Oh my God,” Katelyn said looking at me up down, “You’re beautiful.”
I flushed a little and looked away. I hate compliments. Especially when they aren’t true.
“I’ve missed you so much!” I gushed and we hugged again.
“I know! I’ve missed you too.”
Katelyn was taller now, and her hair was much shorter. It was weird to see everyone looking so changed and different. I almost didn’t like seeing everyone so changed and different.
And then I remembered. Carter. I wonder if he’s changed? I wonder if I’ll even recognize him.
Gosh, I really need to stop thinking about him.
“Okay, so, I did the best thing ever!” Katelyn shouted.
“What did you do?”
“In about 10 minutes, we’re going to town hall because I’m throwing a welcome back party for you.”
“What?” I gasped, “You didn’t have to do that.”
Katelyn was never ever a planner, so it is really weird that she somehow managed to throw me a party. I bet my Mom helped her with it. Even so, I don’t like the idea of her throwing a party for me. I don’t want people making a fuss over me being back. If you haven’t already noticed, I hate when people pay too much attention to me.
“Well, I did,” She said calming down and then she paused and stared at me for a second, “I’m sorry, it’s just so weird to see you again….I can’t wait to spend all summer with you, acting like crazies.”
“Yeah, I can’t wait either.”
“Oh, and Laurie? Carter is going to be at the party.”
My heart skipped a beat. Had I heard her right? Why would he want to come to the party anyway? We haven’t talked in 2 years.
“Oh. Well, what do I care about that?” I said trying to blow it off like I was over him, even though I totally am not.
“Well then let’s go,” Katelyn said cheerfully, “Let’s go to the party. Everyone is waiting for you there.”
Yeah, everyone. Everyone including him.