Photo by Japheth Mast on Unsplash

Kirsten wasn’t at the bus stop. My first thought? Betrayal. How could she miss the first day and let me go it alone? I wasn’t prepared for this.

Kirsten and I weren’t popular, pretty, or special in any way, but we liked to pretend. We’d walk through Kirsten’s trailer park — dirty knees faded shorts — one day cheerleaders, the next, cute boyfriends by our sides. Gravel roads were our runways, only marred by the damn sand spurs that clung to our…