Despite Our Differences

Despite Our Differences
Title: Body of Water Photo Credit: Eric Muhr @ericmuhr

By: Jenna McCarthy/Junior Writer

My best friend was born on January 10th, 2003 just three days after my own. Although there wasn’t a day that went by that I didn’t want to be by his side, despite our differences. Samson weighed only 300 grams at birth and I had been a whopping 3,628 but there was no doubt in my mind that we would grow up stuck at the hip. While learning to walk, he was my first walker and by the time I could run he was following behind me. Samson was my first love. He was capable of detecting my emotions faster and more efficiently than I ever could. Sometimes even predicting my next move before I could even fathom it. I never really had the need or want for any other friends, our personalities fit like two puzzle pieces. Why jeopardize that?  

By the time I was ten we had gotten the approval to walk to the park all by ourselves. I remember that summer clearer than another.The grass had never appeared so green and the air had never seemed so clear. Just a girl and her best friend running up those dark blue swiss like stairs just to go back down the same slide 100 more times. He would wait at the bottom each time, before we took the hike back up to do it all over again. If I had known in that moment that one day I’d have to say goodbye, I would have detached myself. Right then and there I would have ignored my love for him. Maybe then this wouldn’t hurt so bad. 

 My definition of our relationship was simple; it was love. And as you know, with every great love story comes an inevitable obstacle. Normally you’d have the father who didn’t approve of the princess’s father’s way of ruling his kingdom. We were different, our love story conflict was the inability to speak to each other. Which in a way is exactly what we had but with the inability to verbally communicate was our biggest issue. I just assumed what he had meant when he “spoke”. You know that gut feeling when you can physically feel whether or not you’re right or wrong? At times I sucked at that. I sucked so bad that I would assume what he meant and then instantly feel guilty for assuming his thoughts and morphing then in with mine rather than giving him the ability to speak for himself. I can’t wait to have those conversations with him again one day.

One day, without any warning, I thought I was going to lose a lot more than I had bargained for. It was long before I had learned to swim. Long before anyone had allowed me to go unattended. On that day I must have been feeling more adventurous than most. Sammy and I snuck out and were walking through the orchard, he got distracted as he did. Freaking birds. At a speed I’d never be able to maintain, he took off. His slight prance had soon become a much faster sprint. That’s why I began screaming. “Samson! Get back here!” I yelled at the top of my lungs while running around the very edge of my pond. A shortcut I was convinced would bring me right to him. Not paying any attention I stepped on rock so slippery that there was no way I was going to be able to gain any traction. Seconds before falling I had this gut feeling. The feeling that half of me was gone. So concerned about Sam I was completely unaware of my situation. Hitting the surface of the pond the only thought going through my head was that I had to get out. I had to get out for him. That’s when I began flailing my arms in hopes my 3 minute lesson on how to float would save my life. Before I knew it, I was at least a foot under the water and seconds away from using up my last breath. That’s when I heard the splash. I felt a tug on my new blue dress and before I knew it, I was able to take a deep breath. I felt the sun beaming on my skin, the air brushing my face.

His golden hair floated in the water without effort, like the leaves in the wind. 

Samson had come back for me. Safe yet still scared I started balling my eyes out. I was crying harder then ever before. I was completely and utterly a mess. A full blown mess. It was a wave of emotion, a wave of emotion hit me in a way I had never experienced until again today. Today I lost my best friend. He didn’t run into the woods after a squirrel and come back for me when I needed him. I really lost him. He’s gone. So wherever he’s gone I hope he’s with the squirrels he loved to chase, the walks I took him on, and his favorite dog treats. A dog’s a man’s best friend and Samson was mine.

Jenna McCarthy
Jenna McCarthy is a junior in High School. She is involved in the National Honor Society, the President of LEO club and Secretary of FBLA. She manages the women's basketball team at Blue Ridge and plays volleyball. She also exercises reguarlly. You can see me usually on the slopes of Elk Mountain right after my daily bath.

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