Have you ever had a reunion of old friends in which, aside from a few gray hairs, you all looked the same as you did 30+ years ago?
This was what happened to me recently.
After a memorial service of a friend who suddenly passed away, I saw two old classmates from high school and church. Sure, I may have lost my long thick hair but in my eyes, we all looked the same! Excited to see each other and our spouses, we decided to arrange a get-together a couple of weeks later.
Trading email messages and Facebook chats, we finally settled on a mutual date for this event – Saturday night.When the day arrived, each couple was able to share about their children and what they have been doing as their life’s work. Each story was fascinating in its own way. “Wow!” was a common word that evening which was probably from our internal realization of how much time has passed rather than the actual achievements.
Of course, there was a lot of reminiscing and laughter about the silly things we used to do too!
Dinner was a continuation of the laughter and fun we shared that evening. We joked about how my friend (the host) had learned to cook something more than just Hamburger Helper (from our college days). Names were mentioned that jogged our memories of days gone by. It was as if time stood still because in that one evening, we shared a lifetime of memories.
Driving home, I reflected on the conversations shared and the plans for our next get-together.
Then something strange stirred in my heart.
Were we still only 20-somethings or did life really happen for all of us? Most of our children were either on their own or in college. One of my friends still had a daughter in high school but she is getting ready to leave soon too.
For me, it was strange because as I looked at the faces of my friends, I forgot that our lives have changed by the many adventures we have all experienced apart from each other. It did not matter if the events were good or bad, it simply happened!
Now, almost 35 years later, we find ourselves laughing and sharing stories to recapture our youthful innocence.
I suppose that more than anything else, we need to appreciate the long-time friends we still have with us and to relish our time together. With social media and the Internet, there really is no reason why we could not reconnect with friends from the past.
The treasures of our friendships are unlocked by the sharing of our personal life stories. You really know who your true friends are when, in spite of lost time, we can still sit together, share a meal, and neglect the time because we value the time of catching up!
I hope this will encourage you to reach out to your friends whom you have lost contact with – stretch out your hand as you never know who will grab it.