Stay In Touch

There’s no denying it, life is busy these days.  Most of us spend our time rushing madly from one commitment to another, trying to meet the demands of our jobs, our families, or whatever it happens to be that requires our time and attention. So it’s only natural that we look for areas in our lives where we can cut back, and chores are ignored, obligations are dodged, and relationships are neglected.   And sadly, one of the things we are often too quick to let go of is our friendships.

I remember being shocked once when a friend told me, “I’m not interested in making any new friends, because I have all the friends I want already.”  But now I understand what she meant.  Friendships, like all relationships, take time, and there are just so many hours in the day.  So in an effort to maintain her current friendships, she had simply declared a moratorium on making any new ones.  I think the same theory is at work when people make room for a new friend in their life by dropping an old one.

But for me, my friends, both old and new, are too precious to let go.   So I have been vigilant about trying to stay in touch with my old friends, even during the phases in my life when I have very little time to spare, and for the most part, I’ve been successful. Sometimes connecting is as simple as a quick text, other times it’s a phone call just to touch base, while still other times it involves a drive across the state for a girls’ weekend with my high school friends.  However it happens, it’s time well spent, because it means we are keeping the friendship alive.

0553Recently, I enjoyed a high school reunion where I reconnected with many old friends, was visited by one of my best friends from college, and had lunch with a dear childhood friend who now lives on another continent.   I was thrilled when several of my life-long friends, even those who live far away, attended my daughter’s wedding.  There’s just something so satisfying about sharing my life’s major moments with people I have known for decades, and in meeting a friend I haven’t seen in years and still feeling that instant, close connection.  With every single encounter, I find myself being so very glad that I made the effort to stay in touch with my “old” friends.

Yes, making friends and keeping old friendships alive does requires a certain amount of time and effort.  But I’ll gladly put it in, because they’re worth it.

35 thoughts on “Stay In Touch

    • You are right, Lynn, they are SO worth the effort! The older I get, the more I think that we get out of life just exactly what we put into it. And I value my friends so much, that I am always willing to put in the time and effort.

      Liked by 1 person

    • You’re so right, Jodi! I couldn’t survive without my best friends, either…and nothing is nicer than making a new friend who truly connects! Yes, that is me in the blue dress (with far too much makeup on, I think they made me look as if I ought to be laying in a casket with my arms folded across my chest), with my high school friends on the right, and my church friends I met when I first graduated from college and moved to St. Louis on my left. The man on the far left is my hubby. I usually don’t post recent photos of myself on my blog, but today I just figured, “what the heck?”

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Love this post, Ann, and so timely for me, as your posts always are. I think it’s synchronicity. I’ve been thinking a lot about this topic lately. I get so busy with my job and family, that I know I neglect my friends. And I’ve also been known to say that I don’t have room for new ones. I’m on vacation right now. You’ve inspired me to give a call to some of my dearest friends who I’ve neglected. Of course, I’m trying to spend time with my youngest son, who I also neglected all summer due to work. I love my friends and husband and children, yet my job takes me away from them so much. I think the real issue is that I need to change my work.

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    • Oh, Kim, don’t be too hard on yourself! Some of my l lifelong friends and I have gone years without much contact, but then when life settles down a bit, we just reconnect. That’s the thing with true friends: they understand when you aren’t around so much. The main thing is simply not to burn your bridges with friends and leave the door open for when people are free to walk through it. You are very busy now, and that can’t be helped. Just do the best you can, and your friends will be there for you. And I bet your son understands as well!

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  2. You have done much better on that score than I have, Ann. I’ve lost all contact with everyone I knew during my school days and all but one person I knew when I was at university. Perhaps things might have been different had the Internet been invented twenty years earlier.

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  3. It may be a terrible admission, Ann, but I think only have half a dozen or so true friends. By that, I mean ones that I would really sacrifice something significant for, and they the same for me, if push came to shove. I have another twenty or so ‘friends’ – note the qualification with apostrophes – with whom I can and do socialise, but they’re somehow in a different category: ‘people of deep and friendly acquaintance’, or something like that, but not what I call ‘true friends’.

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    • There’s nothing at all wrong with a half dozen true friends! I don’t have a huge number of true friends, either, but have found that keeping up with the friends who aren’t super close friends is still rewarding. I think each of us has to find our own balance, and the only real mistake would be to let all our friends drift away. Because we all need those connections, I believe.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Timely oust, Ann as I’ve been thinking I really do need to make some phone calls to people I haven’t seen or spoken with in some time. You’re right, the friends we had when we were younger should not be ignored. You’ve inspired me.
    Terrific photo, by the way. Blue becomes you..:)

    Liked by 1 person

  5. We were so glad to see you and Dave in St. Louis! I have also heard people say they don’t need more friends,, which I don’t get. I love meeting new people and seeing things from another perspective. Stay in touch (and I really mean it!)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, it was wonderful to see you two again! And don’t worry, we will stay in touch! I’ll let you know the next time we are coming to Iowa, and we will definitely see you at the same time. So glad we have reconnected!

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