on friends

Author: angiem, 02 10th, 2011

I’ve been thinking about two childhood friends quite a lot lately.  I lost touch with these girls a long time ago.  We all went our separate ways, mostly, I believe, because we were so much alike.  Our complicated selves got in the way of our simple selves and we hurt each other and split apart.

Every year, around their birthdays, I pick up the phone and think about calling.  But what would I say?  So much life has happened in the meantime, how would we ever catch up, and would we ever want to?  The things that we didn’t share together - weddings, childbirth, miscarriages, a history, really- are far too many. So I put the phone back down, wondering if, perhaps, they reminisce about those years as well.

This past Christmas I found myself in a stationary store looking for pretty cards and jewel-toned ribbons to attach to gifts, when I came across two Christmas cards that I couldn’t part with. I thought, what if this is a way to get back in touch? Just a little thing to let them know that I am thinking of them. I bought the cards, agonized about what to write -not too much, not too little- and dropped them in the mail.  For the first two or three weeks I checked the mail daily, expecting something in return.

Nothing came. And I said to myself, well, so be it. I’ve extended the olive branch. I can put these friendships behind me. We’ve outgrown each other, apparently.  But then a few days ago, a letter. Four pages of it, written front and back in small, barely distinguished handwriting. I read it and re-read it, shed some tears, laughed out loud, and realized that no matter what, there are friends out there who can pick up the friendship right where it left off. And what a blessing that is.

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31 Responses to “on friends”

  1. Vicki Archer Says:

    That is a lovely outcome Angie…xv

  2. sharon -My French Country Home Says:

    How right you were to contact these old friends Angie. I’m always telling my children to take care of their friendships, to nurture them, because they are so precious, but as you say, life often interferes.
    I am sure that you’e friends were thrilled to hear from you after so long, makes me think - there’s a couple of friends I should give a shout to
    Sharon
    xx
    PS No matter what you write, I always enjoy your words, your style is so effortless, it’s beautiful.

  3. SJ Says:

    Very true. And you’re right, and especially poignant, when you say that there is also a blessing in being able to put the past behind you knowing that you’ve done your best.

  4. Ava Says:

    I consider all my friendships real or virtual as blessings. Missed you!!! Get back on your regular schedule already!!

  5. lisahgolden Says:

    How wonderful! You took an emotional risk and got the reward of renewed friendship.

  6. Stephanie Says:

    Oh I absolutely love this! I love love love it! I am so glad that you wrote and reconnected and that she cared enough to write back. LOVE it!!

  7. deb @ talk at the table Says:

    I’m squealing in joy for you Angie. A long lost girlfriend found me through my husband’s linkin and called me Sunday morning. It was indescribable.

  8. Susan Tiner Says:

    What a moving story Angie.

    I have a few lost girlfriends myself, but no longer desire connection. The hurting was too painful, and life has moved on.

    But I am so glad this turned out well for you and your old friend.

  9. Lori Says:

    This is such a touching story, Angie. I suffer a lot from having left my dearest friends behind in Romania. Friendships like those forged in childhood and young years I think never really die and are never equaled.

  10. Mwa (Lost in Translation) Says:

    I have some friends like that. I don’t believe there’s any hope. But now that you put it like that, maybe I should reconsider…

    I’m very happy for you!

  11. Sarah Says:

    What a wonderful essay. I wonder how many of us have been in that exact situation. I know I have. I haven’t had the same outcome as you, so I was so happy for your outcome!

  12. Julie Says:

    How beautiful Angie.. I know I have some friends that got lost on the way.. and others that aren’t lost.. just haven’t contacted them.. yet I know If I pick up the phone it will be just as yesterday…

    You must be so happy to have received this ‘gift’.. and I think your friend happy to have received hers …

    Sharon is right .. your writing is always enjoyable… Have a lovely weekend my friend.. ciao xxx Julie

  13. joyce Says:

    This is just the happy ends I so enjoy! xo

  14. Mary Moon Says:

    You will ALWAYS find this to be true.

  15. Bobi Says:

    wow… I love this post, it is so true there are those friends that you can always pick up with right where you left off no mater what. Thanks for sharing and I am so glad you got a reply to your olive branch.
    xoxo
    bobi

  16. Jena Says:

    So happy for you to reconnect with one of your lost friends. Good luck with the other one!!!

  17. Jeanne@ Collage of Life Says:

    I know that feeling all to well Angie..there is always that wonder of what could be. I am so glad for your letter..and a thoughtful one at that :)

    Lovely post Angie…as always, heartfelt thoughts that strike just the right note.
    Thanks for your comments this week… I was thinking of you and your comments appeared shortly after:)
    Best wishes for a wonderful weekend Angie…
    Jeanne xxx

  18. Victoria @ Hibiscus Bloem Says:

    How lovely to make that connection once again. A brave you to take the first steps too. Hope you hear from the other friend too.

  19. Gigi Says:

    I’m so pleased to hear this, Angie. You took a leap of faith, and what a beautiful outcome.

    I’ve been struggling so much lately with what to do about a wounded friendship. Your words helped me a great deal. Thanks, my friend. xo Gigi

  20. Susan Deborah Says:

    I am glad that you chose to post those cards that day, dear Angie. Over the years, so many things happen that we are different persons than what we were long ago.

    Glad for you.

    Joy always,
    Susan

  21. She Writes Says:

    I love that. Just do. Friends that are real, really are treasures down long curvy roads.

  22. Make Do Style Says:

    Gosh that is such a good post! It is so true and I must think of whom to send a nice card to. so glad you got a great response xx

  23. Susan R. Mills Says:

    I love those kinds of friends. I have a couple of them. It’s nice to know that no matter how long it’s been, we can pick up right where we left off.

  24. Anya Says:

    My dear darling Angie, you have no idea how much this post touched me in the most unexpected way. I too took the same joirney through trying to renew my old friendships and, just like in your case, nothing came out of it. I think that some people come into our lives for a certain period of time…It is both sad and intriguing to me. While I do have great memories of my previous friendships I always look forward to new once in the future. :-) I am wishing you happy Valentine’s Day filled with love and unexpected surprises.:-)

  25. Elisa Says:

    I love a happy ending! what you couldn’ t say over the phone you said it in writing. I’m happy your friend reached out to you. Wishing you this is the beginning of a long long friendship.

  26. La Belette Rouge Says:

    I too love the ending to this story and to the new beginning of your friendship. Good for you for reaching out. I am sure your friend was so very thrilled to rekindle your friendship. Lovely post, dear Angie.xoxo

  27. mrsbear Says:

    So glad you reconnected, sometimes extending that first branch is the most difficult part. It takes a bit of courage to put yourself out there, but someone has to be first, right? I’m excited for you, getting that letter must have felt fantastic.

  28. Francesca Says:

    What a blessing indeed! I think there’s a stage in life when we get wrapped up so much in our own families, that we lose sight of friendship. It was good to extend the olive branch.

  29. Autumn Says:

    Awwww, such a lovely story Angie! So happy for you! Yes, some friendships are like that and it is a huge blessing! I hope that your friendships will flourish and bloom! Btw, I have been doing the Magpie Tales (thanks to you) and I am having so much fun! Stop by and check me out sometime! Well, I truly hope that you are doing well! xoxo! :)

  30. Cindy L Says:

    You’re amazing. You just demonstrated the beauty and power of writing by hand, on something beautiful. Anyone can send an e-mail, but you are accomplished in the art of friendship. Glad you got an answer back in the mail!

  31. Relyn Says:

    I love that. Facebook and email just can’t compete with real, human, by-hand interaction, can it?

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