I always used to consider the friendships I formed online to be transient, shifting, intangible things, meant to last as long as my interest in the places where they were formed.
Then some things changed. I met one or two people who seemed to either share my thoughts exactly, or had the thoughts I hoped to have someday when I "grew up" and became a more mature version of myself. I met some people who, once befriended, refused to come unstuck, refused to spin away off into the ether of the internet.
I met some people who knew how to hold on, and they taught me that real friends are where you find them. They taught me that I was worth holding onto. They taught me that an online friendship was the purest and truest definition of the phrase "meeting of the minds."
Out here on the internet we don't have facial expressions unless we use pictures or the funny squiggles at the top of the keyboard, so we learn how to talk to one another truthfully, simply, honestly, and clearly. We share our thoughts as clearly as we can, and we meet one another out here mind to mind in a way that can't be matched out in the "real world," where hormones and facial expressions and distractions of the flesh can lead us astray.
And among all these meetings, the one I have treasured the most and for the longest, and have taken for granted so foolishly, is my friendship with George.
He has told me many times that I am like a little sister to him. He's known me when I was nice, and when I was not nice, and when I was downright cat shit mean. And through it all, he was there, just being my friend anyway.
George, I hope you somehow can know how much I care, how much I miss your words out here in the fragile air of the internet. I hope that somehow you can sense that I am just as much your friend as you have been a friend to me. And if you never get a chance to see these words, I just wanted them out there, trumpeting loud for the world to see, that this good man was, is and always will be...