My “word” for 2010 is: friendship. I wrote about it HERE, about why I wasn’t happy with that particular “word”.
I’m not very good at friendships.
But the word wouldn’t leave me alone and I’m pretty sure that in 2010 I’m going to learn some things about friendship that I didn’t know before. My goal is to write at least once a month about the things I think I’m learning. I want to be able to look back and remember. To make sure I listened along the way…
These are my thoughts from January…
There are friends from as far back as High School that I have reconnected with in the past two years, thanks to facebook. This has been a wonder. When you don’t see someone for over thirty years and then reconnect, even if just online, there’s an element of coming face to face with your own journey. Here’s what I mean…
It’s not every day that I look in the mirror and think about how much hope and enthusiasm I had when I was 18. How I was certain about what my future would hold. I don’t often see the past thirty-something years in a split screen: “The girl so sure of what she knew” on one side and “The woman not sure of anything” on the other.
But reconnecting with so many precious souls from thirty years ago gave me that experience over and over again. With myself and with each of them.
Life always seems to dish out things that wear away the self confidence and naive hope of youth.
I mean, who stands in front of a minister in a white dress and thinks that in 6 short years she’ll end up divorced?
Who spends time with their siblings and thinks…one of us will leave this world before our 31st birthday?
Who at 23 innocently takes her first sip of champagne and sets off a time bomb of addiction that will beat her to a bloody pulp on and off for over 20 years?
I could go on and on…these are things from my own journey. But everyone has been through heartaches and shattered dreams. And pain, in whatever form, tends to change us.
As months went by I learned a little more about my old friends. There were glimpses into where they are in life, what makes them laugh and in some cases, what makes them cry.
And as I got to know them again, I began to see the tender colors of their younger selves. And the colors were never more vibrant as in contrast with the shadows of years come and gone.
Their beautiful journeys have helped me see my own journey very differently.
There’s a 30-plus reunion with several graduating classes from my high school coming up this summer. I’m so looking forward to it for completely different reasons than I did our 10 year reunion. I think I went with “me” in mind that time. I wanted mostly to say: “I’m okay. I’m good. Life is working out for me.”
This time it’s different. This time I’m looking forward to seeing my old friends.
Friends with whom, a very long time ago, I shared a bit of life’s journey.
Okay, so it’s not like I turned over a new leaf in January and became “friend of the year”. For some of you who are good at friendships this is like Friendship Kindergarten! But that’s what I took away from the first tender month of 2010!
Any thoughts or advice from you who are experts ?