Some of my best friends I have had since high school. I love the fact that people have known me a long time. It wraps around me like a quilt. I enjoy making new friends, meeting new people but the comfort of those relationships that have outlasted your school girl whims, your irresponsibileness of your teenage years, and the self centred years that we all put in as we grew into ourselves fits like an old sweatshirt. You know it belongs on your back.
The girls I knew in high school, well we ran around together like a band of thieves (we never stole, just a metaphor). We were just tight looking out for each other. There were missteps along the way with each other as there are with young women. There were even years where we did not keep in touch. Sometimes even now we go months or a year with out seeing each other but I still feel that they are in my corner. I still feel that one cup of tea after a long absence would fill the space between us.
Friendship needs to be easy at my age. It needs to be void of expectations, and we need understanding with out explanation.
Yesterday a friend came in and said she was going to the Jann Arden Concert in Moncton with two other good friends. They did not invite because they booked it in May and they knew that I would never commit to September in May. I just jumped in and said, “Can I come?” “Sure, get a ticket”. I got a third row seat all by myself but travelled with those guys and went to dinner with them. It never occurred to me I was not wanted, I just knew that they did not ask because I say no to lots of well planned events. I like to go on the spur of the moment. Jann Arden was great by the way. I was mocked for inviting myself. I admonished them for not inviting me. None of it was serious. We knew our roles and responsibilities having gone from play group to university with our children. Again, long old friendships.
Not to devalue the new ones. There is nothing more fun then hearing a new story. I love to hear someone new is moving to the community, and getting to know them. There is joy in discovery as well. In friendship you just have to be able to assume they care about you. You can’t go getting slighted too easy. You have to be quick to forgive. Honesty and understanding are necessary if you want to get past the first few years because once you do there is often an endurance that will sustain relationships for a long time.