Once we graduated, all four of us went in different directions - 4 different colleges; 4 different career paths; eventually, we settled in 4 different cities. Sadly, during our college years, the friendships I thought would last forever simply faded away. I really only kept in touch with M, one of the guys, but even that was sporadic and, admittedly, he was the one who put in most of the effort to keep in touch. (M and I continue to keep in touch, by the way, and are still great friends. We live in different states and don't get to see each other often enough, but we do get together when we can and our families have a great time together!) Sadly, B, the other guy, soon fell off my radar completely and, today, I have no idea where he lives, if he has a family of his own, or if he is still following his original career path.
J, on the other hand, moved back to the town where I grew up and where my parents and brother continue to live. Although I didn't talk to her directly, my mom would occasionally bump into her or hear things through the small town grapevine and pass them along to me once in a while. I knew where J was working and that she had had two little girls of her own. At times, I wondered how such a strong, beautiful friendship could just fade away the way ours did. It was nobody's fault, really. There was no big disagreement or falling out. At least as far as I remember, there was no one big thing that cased our friendship to split. Life just happened and took us in different directions. Our connection simply disappeared like a ship sailing off over the horizon.
Sometimes, though, that same life that happened and separated people has a way of bringing them back together.
This past weekend, I headed back to my hometown to celebrate my brother's upcoming 40th birthday. I had no idea that J would be there, too, but, of course, I recognized her the minute I saw her. Like me, she looks that same as always with a few years added on. As it turns out, her husband and my brother work together and have become friends themselves, so they had been invited to the party.
For a few hours, J and I stood by the pool watching our daughters - my three and her two - splashing and playing together in the pool. I asked about her family and she asked about my blog. We talked about our 20th high school reunion that is coming up in the fall and whether or not we planned to go. We talked about jobs, and mothering, and M. I won't say it was like we picked up right where we left off - after all, we left off 20 years ago - but, it was great and, maybe, just a little surreal.
At one point, as J and I stood there talking, her youngest, 4, was jumping off the side of the pool into the arms of my oldest, 12. It was really very sweet. They were smiling and laughing; we were smiling and laughing. My mom came over and commented how strange yet wonderful it is when life comes full circle that way.
Sometimes, there are people who come into our lives for just a short time. (High school feels like forever at the time, doesn't it?) Even though they don't always stay long for whatever the reasons my be, they make a mark on us. They share moments and memories that, perhaps, no one else can share. Although high school is a time that I would mostly rather forget, I will always remember my good friends fondly and I'm glad I had a chance to reconnect even for a just little while.
|J's girls and my girls all together!|
This post was part of the One Word Blog Linkup hosted by, Janine of Confessions of a Mommyholic, Marica of Blogitudes, and me! This week, the word prompt choices were Soon and Sweet. If you would like to join the linkup you can find more information HERE, sign up for weekly emails HERE, and/or join our Facebook group HERE. Every Friday, two prompts are emailed. Choose one and write a post using that word as inspiration. Linkup up any time between 6:00am EST on Wednesday-9:00pm EST on Thursdays on any of the host sites.