The other night, I had a bad dream, and I
woke to realize that it was true. Friends really was
Over the last ten years, I’ve grown with Chandler and Monica, Joey
and Phoebe, and Ross and Rachel. When it all began, I was a college student. My friends
really did live just next door—or just down the hall, or in the next building.
And we really did hang out in the coffee shop. We watched every week, we bought
the show’s soundtrack, and we quoted lines from the show.
As my life
changed, though, my Friends were still there. I said goodbye to my college
pals—the ones I’d gathered with every Thursday night with a pint of Ben and Jerry’s to
share, the ones I thought would be my friends for life, the ones I lost touch with years
ago. I moved on into the real world and got a job that I hated—but where I had
friends who discussed Thursday night’s show around the water cooler on Friday morning.
With my Friends, I started relationships, and I ended relationships. I worked
menial part-time jobs. I suffered through my bad real job, and I suffered through losing
it. I even planned my wedding at the same time as Monica.
No matter how
bad things seemed as life changed, I always had Thursday night. I could sit down in
front of the TV and laugh about life for awhile.
Through the years, I’ve
spent my holidays with my Friends. I’ve cried at their weddings—and at the births
of their children. In fact, I knew my Thursday night Friends better than I knew
some of the people I went out with on Friday nights.
Then, two years ago,
I left my home behind. I said goodbye to my family and friends and moved a thousand
miles away from everything that had been familiar. I settled in a new town where I knew
no one but my husband. As strange as it may sound, my Friends were my stability.
They were that one familiar thing that I still had—no matter where I went, through
college and the real world and married life and life in that new town, I always had our
Thursday nights together.
Somehow, I guess I just thought that it would
go on forever—that I’d still be laughing with my six Friends as they moved into
the same retirement community and cracked jokes about incontinence and grandkids. But I
guess all good things must come to an end.
I watched the last episode in
the best way I could: with my friends—my husband, Paul, and Jason and Amy, who,
ironically enough, live right next door. And I said one last tearful goodbye to my
In the immortal words of my friend Chandler, could I
be any sadder?
I guess it’s time to move on now. To grow up. To
leave the coffee shop and go our separate ways. But I’ll always have the memories of
those Thursday nights.
And I’ll always have syndication.