About the time my baby brother was born my family moved into anew house. In this house I was finally old enough to play outside by myself. The problem was I wasn’t really I to sport or running around outside. I was mostly interested in playing with my He-man toys and Construx. I would remain a bit of a homebody until I broke my leg as shown in the post on #35. But the exception to that rule was Brody Quiggle.
Brody was my neighbor. We had adjoining back yards that we could run back and forth in. I don’t quite know how we met. I kind of think our parents might have done a play date. But You take two 5 year old boys and put them together and they are likely going to be friends. And that is what we were
If number 35 on the countdown were my first friends, Brody was my first best friend. We were finally old enough that we could start doing brave big boy things like knock on his front door and say “can Brody play” when his mom answered the door. And because he was a good friend and always can out to play. I on the other hand was usually busily engaged in some sort of project and couldn’t spare the time to come up from my basement Laboratory more than about 1 out of 3. So that means after the 3 time of him coming over to knock on the door I might deem to go outside and play with him. And on top of that if ever we wanted to play together in doors, then there was the whole procedure of going to one front door and asking “mom can I go to Brody’s house. Then mom says “Is it alright with Brody’s mom?” So we both run over and knock on Brodys door as ask his mom if it is alright if we play inside his house. And if she says “yes” then we have to run back to my house to say “mom, I’m going to Brody’s,” and pray she doesn’t ask anymore questions. And if she doesn’t have any questions, then we run back over to Brody’s and try to remember what we were going to do at his house in the first place.
I remember specifically Brody and I were really into these weird “Rock transformer” toys. I also remember us going to some of our first ever movies together. Real Academy award stuff like Alvin and the Chipmunks the Movie, and The Great Mouse Detective.
At some point Brody moved. We always went to different schools so we didn’t see each other much. I remember Brody had some seizure issues and I got to visit him in the hospital. He had all these electrodes stuck to his head that were measuring his brainwave activity on a monitor in his room. He would rid a stationary bike as fast as possible and the screen would light up with brain activity. I remember that night in the hospital as #35 on the countdown was on TV playing the Spurs, and they were now like 32 and 4 on the season.
Although we went to different schools we still hung out from time to time, and it was usually at Brody’s urging. I can recall more than once getting a call out of nowhere to come over to his house to hang out. And we would hang out, and play basketball and video games. It was like we never moved and were always neighbors.
When we grew up and went our separate ways in the world we ultimately reconnected on Facebook. Unfortunately I have had some weird hang ups about Facebook as I would return my purge my friends list of people I haven’t actually seen or spoken to in so long. Which is actually kind of stupid and as backwards as you can get. Not having spoken in so long means I should reach out on Facebook to say “what’s up?” Not severe what small digital strand of connection is left.
Once again, he was knocking on my door when I was just playing alone in my basement. And now I have him on my 40 for 40 list and can’t even tell him. Brody’s not the only one on the list that I have done this kind of thing to. And it’s ridiculous because as a therapist I see this and n other people all the time and it’s patently obvious. So a real “physician, heal thy self” situation emerges.
Life is short, but that means friends can be forever, if you let them.
I wish I would have let Brody