I have a tendency to tell a lot of people that they're my favorite and recently I may have started a war within a group of my friends...whoops. But these five are separate from that situation. They're different. With Noah, Elizha, Paul, Mason and Cameron, it's actually emotionally impossible to choose my favorite out of the five of them. I love each of them equally and separately. Yes, I am aware that that makes no sense. The five of them mean a lot to me. I'm not exactly sure why I'm writing this chapter, everything that's being written has been bothering me for a while, so I had a feeling I'd write it eventually. Each of them has a song attached to their name. It's up there because that's a song I love that reminds me of them.
Paul Liriano: Royal Tailor - "Hold Me Together"
Can you hold me together? Can your love reach down this far? Can you hold me together? Cause without you holding my heart, I'm falling apart.
Whether you realize it or not, you pretty much hold me together. I look to you when I want my smile back. When you're around I have an overwhelming feeling that somehow everything is going to turn out alright. Being who you are makes me overthink a lot less. I don't stress out as much when you're around and I'm not trying everyday to tear myself apart and start from the bottom up.
I remember Prayer Conference senior year, I made the bus stop on the side of the road because my parents refused to believe that we were leaving at eight instead of one. I felt terrible and getting on that bus was the worst experience of my life. Everyone hated me and looked like they wanted to kill me. So I focused my eyes to the floor and took the first seat available. But then I got up the courage to sit up and looked around. My eyes landed on yours and you smiled at me, lifted your hands and said, "who gives." I don't know why but that changed my entire trip. Knowing that you didn't care about everything that was happening helped me deal with the whole situation. I did a complete 180 when it came to how I felt.
Then there was a day towards the end of the year that I wasn't okay at all and you noticed immediately. So you wrapped one arm around me and pulled me to your side, all because, according to you, “I looked like I was about to cry.” Somehow you always seem to make everything okay without even trying. I'm gonna need you around while we still continue to grow throughout this life. It's not going to be easy and I know I'm going to stress out and try to tear myself apart. I know for a fact that I'll need my best friend around to hold me together.
Elizha Sanders: Andrew Ripp - "You Will Find Me"
Who wrote the rain? Who wrote the sun in? Who called your name? Where are you running? I'm gonna be there near or far. I'm gonna meet you where you are. Who wrote the rain? Who wrote the sun in?
If I were to tell a story according to the way the world changes, I'd write the rain in when I wasn't having my best days. But then I'd write the sun in whenever you decided to come around. My favorite thing about you is your talent. Not just musically, but in the way you so easily, so simply bring people to life. I have yet to meet someone that can spend more than a minute with you without laughing, smiling, or just being completely enraptured by your personality.
Musically, you're phenomenal. I don't even think you begin to comprehend how talented you are. I hear so many people talk about it. You're passionate about it, which is the best thing. Music is something that comes so naturally to you. It's like you're not even trying, but I know that you are and that makes it even better. I hope your music takes you far, wherever it is that you want to go. For some reason you choose to put up with me. You willingly became my best friend during our final year of high school, and you took part in our selfies that were constantly flawless. Honestly, having you as a best friend was something indescribably lucky and extremely hilarious. So Lizha, next time you decide to wake up early enough to see the sunrise, you'll know that that's who you are to me. I wrote the sun in for you. But even as the sun sets each day, you're still here. And I think as long as you're here, I won't write about the rain too much anymore.
Cameron Gustman: John Mayer - "Gravity"
Gravity is working against me. And gravity wants to bring me down. Oh twice as much ain't twice as good. And can't sustain like one half could. It's wanting more that's gonna send me to my knees.
This song reminds me of you because you played it in the SA booth once. Music really shines through people and shows the world who they truly are and this song did it for you. John Mayer spent the entire time talking about how gravity wanted so badly to bring him down. You've never mentioned wanting to defy gravity(then again you are the same person who spent an hour plus trying to convince SA that you can get to the moon by folding a paper forty something times. For the record, I believe you) and yet sometimes I feel like you've already done it.
I feel like you've just bypassed all of the drama that comes with being young. You always find your way out. It's like you found a loophole. You pulled through all the stupid things that seem to cling to all of us. You never let the world shake you. You're so completely content with who you are and what you want. It's incredible. Our theme for senior year was "against the flow." You were the one that portrayed that the most. You never went against who you are. You're full of talent and you're such an amazing person. Stay that way please. "I like that kinda stuff" (Readers...Don't try to understand, it's an SA thing.)
Noah Miller: Tenth Avenue North - "Times"
Well my love is over. It's underneath, It's inside, It's in between. The times that you're healing and when your heart breaks. The times that you feel like you've fallen from grace...I'm there in your sorrow under the weight of your shame. I'm there through your heart-ache. I'm there in the storm. My love I will keep you by my power alone.
This is about to get really sweet, so don't cry. At the perfect time, at the right time, at the best time, I believe God sends people into our lives that he knows we need around. In a way he's saying, "Since I can't be there for you in a physical sense, here's someone to help me out until I come back for you." I think that's where you came in. So our friendship wasn't my idea or yours. I think you just might be stuck with me...good luck buddy.
I've known the Noah that sits down at a piano, picks up a guitar or just sings and makes music ten times more beautiful than it already is. I've known the you that can say, "I'm an introvert...but I'm an extrovert, ya feel?" and it make perfect sense to me. I like knowing you.
I like that there's no room between the lyrics of this song. I never get the chance to say, "But God what if.." Each line is constant. He's constantly reminding me that his love is anywhere and everywhere. I feel like you've done that for me. You never let me have a moment to doubt myself. You never let me go around thinking I'm not loved. Every time I felt like I needed to heal or if my heart broke...there was you. And I know that I can get pretty insane sometimes, but you never seemed to care. So if you really wanna know why I love you so much, this is my reason why.
Mason Wing: Matt Kearney - "Ships In The Night"
Like ships in the night. You keep passing me by. Just wasting time. Trying to prove who's right. And if it all goes crashing into the sea. If it's just you and me. Trying to find the light.
Throughout our entire friendship, we've had a ton of arguments. They were never malicious or brutal. We just disagreed on things and of course both of us believed we were right. Eventually, from what I recall, we just let it go and agreed to disagree. I don't remember any of those debates/arguments, not one. I remember having them, but I don't remember what they were about. I think that's because I knew when it truly came down to it, when it all goes crashing into the sea, our friendship would remain the same, we'd find the light.
All of my memories of you are the ones that make me laugh or smile. Like the day that the girls couldn't talk to the boys so your best idea was to chase me down the hallway doing anything you could to get me to talk to you, including stepping on my shoes. Or the day we spent organizing the blood drive and we sat in the front office the entire school day completely taking apart the book we were assigned for our senior project. And then there's the times that I'll be doing something, anything really, and you'd say, "Jania they don't want you to do that," and I'd ask who “they” was and you would never tell me. We'd go back and forth for at least ten minutes until I'd give up trying to get you to tell me. Or the times I'd say 'Prangles' instead of 'Pringles' just because I know you hate it. And all of the times we'd fight about how much money I owe you for saying I'm not going to Southern. (Even though I did and I'm not paying you by the way.)
If I spend a moment thinking about our friendship I usually end up laughing, a lot. I know that, that laugh wouldn't exist if you weren't around and in my life. One of the reasons I love my friends is because they notice when I'm not okay and they're okay with the fact that I can't always be okay. But you, I feel like you never noticed and yet you would unintentionally choose those days to make me smile. It's like you knew without knowing that you knew...confusing right? Every bad day I had, you chose that day to be there and do something funny or be someone that would make me forget about anything that hurt. And for all of these reasons you are the fifth and final favorite. Congrats.