It’s Class Reunion Time

It’s class reunion time, again. Excited? Anxious? Well, looking forward to it or not, it’s about that time. And time, or more specifically, the swift passing of it, has a way of making you think. You think about the friends you haven’t seen since graduation, or the end of the summer. Where are they now? Who are they now? How did we ever lose touch? You think about how many of those friendships were made, grown, strengthened or faded.

When I started college, one of the first sayings I remember is, “Friends you make in college are friends for life”. I used to think so much on the latter part of the phrase, “for life”, that I neglected what turned out to be the operative portion, “Friends you make”. When you really think about it, friends you make don’t have to remain tight-knit, peas-in-a-pod type friends. They don’t even have to be made in college. Some of my closest friends – I do not use the word loosely – have been made since college. Some before college. Some in some quite unlikely places. And in many places where I would have expected to make friends, I found none. As I commented to a recent college graduate, who found herself contemplating the validity of her college friendships, “Perhaps that will be your experience too.”

You never know – and that’s about all I know for sure. But it has been my experience that depending on people, places and circumstances, friends are not always easy to make, keep, or identify, but those are the ingredients of friends: People, places, and a heaping helping of circumstances. Once you have them, it’s okay not to talk to them 10 times a day, like you did in high school or college, because life going on does not afford us that luxury, thank God. God knows that some friends, we can only take in small doses; myself included, I’m sure. Once in a while is plenty. I try to remember, as I suggested, to love my friends with the changing times and lifestyles, as I expect they love me. “The same way people evolve, so do friendships.” That’s what I told her, anyway. Friends are great. I know mine are.

And so it is, with class reunion season upon us. The thought of friends and relationships, past, present or non-existent, absolutely floods our minds. Remember those girls who were mean to you in gym class? Remember the bullies who picked on you at the bus stop? Maybe you were the mean girl or the bully. Maybe you were lucky enough not to have such experiences at all. Maybe you were the one who had all the best parties or got invited to all the best parties, and you can’t wait to party some more. And maybe some of those same people from back then, are the people to whom you are closest now. You car pool together, or sing in the church choir. You coach in the same pee-wee football league, or maybe your daughters are in girl scouts, karate, or ballet together. Then again, maybe you still hate each other’s guts, and no one has evolved in your circle in the last 5, 10, or 20 years. That would be an extremely unfortunate waste of time, energy and opportunity, but that happens, too.

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