We used to string the phone cord from the kitchen into her bedroom. Then we’d huddle over the receiver together, calling boys. And by “calling boys”, I mean we’d dial their numbers, hang up on them, giggle hysterically, and repeat 50 times. I’m pretty sure we were the sole reasons why they invented caller ID. After we graduated high school, we went to Waikiki together. Four of us by ourselves, we switched planes, flagged down cabs, and learned important life lessons like Strawberry Hill only tastes like fruit punch. Oops.
The next summer, we moved back to Hawaii. It was as simple as impulsively faxing over an application one late night. The next thing we knew we were living in Aloha Towers. We had jobs and a refrigerator. We learned to use bus routes, and found the grocery store. For the first time, everything was up to us.
After the summer, we went our separate ways. There was college and road trips, relationships, jobs, marriage. The busy-ness of life allowed for paths to cross only occasionally. Then one day she emailed and asked if I’d consider flying out to photograph her family. She was now living in San Francisco with her husband and little boy. They’d been married for years, but I’d never met either of them. So, of course I agreed.
It felt like a full circle, opening the door to her apartment. Certain things hadn’t changed. She still had too many shoes. We still laughed like teenagers. And she still knew all the best places to find everything, whether it be coffee, a pedicure, a baby sling. But what I loved most was the depth of understanding that happens when two friends grow up, then apart, then back together. Suddenly there are more layers to a story you’d put down years ago.
So here was my friend, living in her new chapter. One that felt familiar, yet completely new in context. I’d never seen her so content. And as we walked to the car after her shoot, I told her that I was so happy for the way things had turned out for her. She looked at me and said that everything else was just getting ready for this. And that made me think about life in general. The messy, scary, reckless, parts mix up with the thrilling, beautiful, intimate pieces. They’re non-discriminating as they combine, yet they have a common goal. Everything is getting you ready for This. The only place where Life can exist, Right Now.
What does Right Now look like for you?