I met a friend for coffee yesterday. Not just any friend. I met my very first best friend. My oldest friend. The girl I met on the first day of kindergarten. My mother and I stood at the bus stop waiting, and waiting. She and her mother had been doing the same and decided to drive to school. They picked us up and took us to Mrs. Kirby’s class together. That bus that didn’t show changed my life forever. (Okay – maybe a little dramatic because we ended up being in the same class and would have met anyway….but still you never know how it could have worked out.)
From that very first day of school, Becky and I were best friends. We spent so many days together playing and growing. I can’t even begin to share all of the memories we made. We were always together. She was either at my house or I was at hers. We grew up together. I still know her childhood phone number. I still remember the games we played, the adventures we shared. We dreamed together. We used to sit in my mom’s car and pretend to be grown ups. (Oh if we knew how hard being a grown up was going to be….). We would wear my mom’s sunglasses and pretend like we were driving to the mall while talking about our perfect husbands and our children. We even had “names” (I won’t share those…)
In the last 20 years, this was only the second time we have gotten together! But the minute we sat down I felt such a familiar, comforting warmth envelop me. We just picked up and talked and shared – this time as REAL grownups! When I think about all of the time we have missed over the past several decades, I feel sad that we didn’t make our friendship more of a priority, that we didn’t share in so many everyday moments of life. But rather than letting that sadness take hold, I have decided to use it for good. We have resolved to be more present in each other’s lives. We are not going to wait another 5, 10, even 20 years to catch up again. Two and half hours was not nearly enough time yesterday to catch up on what seems like a lifetime. So we will be intentional about our meetings. Cause here’s the thing…I don’t just want to get together and “catch up” anymore. I want to actually share in life with my very first best friend.
It did my heart good to sit and talk and laugh and listen to that voice that was such a HUGE part of my childhood. If there is anything I can share with you now it’s this. Pick up the phone and call that old friend. Send a letter (yes – like a real old-fashioned hand-written one). Take the first step, reach out and get together. I promise it will do your heart good too!