I was having a really hard day. I was feeling kind of hopeless about getting better, my stack of schoolwork was probably taller than I was, and I felt alone.
From it’s spot, my laptop started ringing, a video call alert from Savana.
I didn’t really feel like talking to her, but I didn’t want to disappoint Savana..
The laptop beeped, and we were connected. Savana had moved into a room with Callie, and it was the same as ours, but flipped.
We talked for a few minutes, but I wasn’t very enthusiastic. I answered her questions, but she was the one leading the conversations.
Finally Savana noticed something was off.
“What’s wrong Joy? You don’t seem much like yourself.”
I sighed. “Do you think it’s easy to act like yourself when you are stuck in the same room for days?”
“I didn’t mean it like that Joy.”
“How did you mean it then?”
“I.” She stopped. “I don’t know. I guess I meant that it seemed like something was wrong.”
“Of course there is something wrong.” I started to explain about how I was feeling, but then stopped.
“You wouldn’t understand.” I told her.
“You wouldn’t understand Savana. No one does. They can’t. You can’t understand how hard it is to be stuck in bed, and for it to be all your fault.”
But I cut her off. “You can’t understand Savana. You have been having fun with your friends, having the time of your life. You are probably glad that I’m not here, probably enjoying your time with Callie!”
“Even when I was there, all you talked about was Callie, Callie, Callie.”
“That’s not true!” Savana’s voice was starting to rise now. “You spent all your time with the ‘popular group’ You refused every invitation of mine. I TRIED.”
“Look, this is hard for me too, okay?”
“You? You have absolutely nothing to feel bad about. You have everything perfect right now.”
“No. I don’t.”
I heard a clunk as Savana’s tablet hit the floor, and then my screen went black too.
Later in the day, I was trying to take a nap, to forget all that had happened, but it wasn’t really working.
Mom came into my room. “Hey Joy, want a cupcake?”
Mom set the cupcake on my dresser and sat down. “What’s wrong Joy?”
“What do you mean?”
“Something is obviously wrong.”
I sighed. “I had an argument with Savana.”
“She doesn’t understand.”
“You know, this has been hard on her too Joy.”
“Her? But I’m the one who has lost everything!”
“Yes, and she couldn’t do anything to stop it. And I’m sure she misses you.”
I didn’t say anything. It was a lot to think about.
The timer beeped, and Mom got up to leave.
“But what do I do?”
Just before she left, Mom stopped. “You could try talking to her.”
I took a deep breath and pushed the video call button. It rang fourteen times before she finally accepted.
For the first few seconds we just stared at each other.
Then I started talking.
“I’m so sorry Savana. I know you didn’t do anything wrong. I was jealous of you and Callie, and I thought you didn’t want to be my friend anymore.” I was desperately hoping that she would assure me that she did still want to be my friend, but I wasn’t expecting it.
“Of course I still want to be your friend Joy!” I guess I needn’t have worried. “When you left I felt so bad, like it was my fault you had to go home. Callie helped assure me that it wasn’t my fault, and I needed a friend after you left. And,” she admitted quietly, “I was jealous of you also.”
“Me? What in my life could possibly be worth wanting?”
“For awhile you seemed to have it all. You had a big group of friends that you hung out with all the time, and you didn’t seem to need me anymore. You refused every invitation of mine.”
It came upon me, that I had, in fact, refused all her invitations. It wasn’t because I was trying to hurt her, it was because I was too sick to enjoy them.
“This has been hard for me too, Joy. You were always my friend, and then you left. Now you are stuck at home, and I’m stuck here. It’s hard.”
“I’m so sorry Savana.”
“I am too.”
“I have to go now.” Savana said. “But if you ever need to talk to me, I’ll be here.”
“Same for you, okay?”