Last weekend, I was able to meet up with one of my closest and oldest friends; we met during our first year of high school. Since we graduated, we’ve had 10 years of never living in the same place but somehow managing to see each other once or twice a year despite moving across continents and across the United States.
There is something very reassuring about being friends with someone for a very long time; it grounds me in the fact that I can change over time but there will be people who notice if I stop living authentically as myself. My friend and I have both come to new places in our careers and our relationships this year that have not always been easy or simple to sort out, but even those new rhythms seem to mirror conversations we’ve had all along the way.
I joke that it is hard to call my friend because anything less than an hour of chatting seems like ludicrously short for the kinds of talks we usually have. This year, in particular, I’ve struggled to find the important multi-hour time slots to make sure we have real, meaningful connections. This trip was lovely, though, because she arrived at noon and we didn’t part ways until almost midnight… and we were talking most of those days. We drank coffees, we ate delicious meals, we wandered, we climbed a lighthouse, we marveled at the people we saw. It was wonderful, and so affirming that someone I’ve cared about for so long can still connect with me so well.
What do you love best about get togethers with old friends? I think it is more than just the fact that I feel like my real self (whatever that is) has stayed intact despite years of changes… but I’d love to hear your thoughts.