“The desire for friendship comes quickly. Friendship does not.” –Aristotle
Soon after moving to New York City over a decade ago, I realized that I was missing something. It was a longing of some kind; a deep void. During the process of my wedding it was fulfilled but, soon after, the longing came back again.
This longing was the deep connection I had felt with my group of lifelong friends that I had left behind when I moved to the Northeast.
Since being up here I have made many friends, some who have come and gone, and many who still remain. I realized that the gift my childhood friendships hold is a solid foundation of trust. This kind of friendship isn’t built in a month or a year but many years. And, these years don’t only include times of laughter and joys but also sadness, questioning and personal challenges. It is only after you have experienced these types of life challenges with your friends that a bond is either made, strengthened or broken. My childhood friends and I have been through birthday parties, dress up, toilet paper rolling, too much makeup, big bangs, suspension, 3 a.m. dancing, boyfriends, break ups, marriages, being moved abroad, divorce, babies, and death.
Our connection has been strengthened through hundreds of decisions both good and bad. We have taken turns over the years being there for each other, silent and strong. There isn’t a bond that can be made stronger than through the trials of life.
Over the years I have frequently gone back south and we’ve been able to get together for weddings, baby showers, births, dinners and wine.
Since my daughter’s birth I’ve found it tougher to get down there. Fortunately, this Fall, our 20th high school reunion gave me the excuse I needed.
Near the end of the night of our reunion I took a moment to look around at all of us. I felt so grateful to my parents for investing in sending me to a private, Christian school and giving me the opportunity to form lasting friendships with these women. Inside I felt deeply at peace and proud of the choices I had made in these friends. I believe it is a rare gift to find friends who are steady, strong and fully OK with you just being YOU.
I treasure my friends and the authenticity of our relationship.
Although we aren’t able to see each other often or talk as much as we’d like, things are always as if we just left each other the day before. And, for this I’m grateful.
I’d like to say that the void I had years ago finally left but it never really has. I miss each and every one of these girls and secretly hope for a day when we can all be together again planning overnight slumber parties and shopping trips. And, in my dream, it will one day happen. Until then—Jennifer, Becky, Lori, Michelle, Joy and J.C., I love you guys!!!
“Friendship isn’t a big thing.
It’s a million little things.”