Buzzing around the friend nest is the constant hum of women coordinating schedules, working to stay in touch and making plans to connect.
“When will you be back in Boston…oh not til next month…let’s get a dinner on the calendar because it will already be another month before we see each other.”
“You sold your house, that’s awesome…down sized…amazing…let’s get a weekend sometime in the next 4 months for a visit and we will have our time then.”
“Your kids moved to LA…that’s incredible, oh your going for the winter to help them….awesome…Well we can Facetime and stay in touch.”
Calendars are checked and dates are squeezed and now shared between new and old friend commitments.
Getting in a walk in the old neighborhood or squeezing in a lunch is how we piece together and maintain our friendships until it gets to be too much work.
But the truth is, it takes an effort to pull off a visit. Sometimes, during the dance of scheduling, we may realize that the effort and will to make it happen is not always there. Some friendships, as much as we enjoyed them, may not stand the test of time.
The ultimate clearing house for many was during Covid, as the simpler life became a bit of a treasured life – a silver lining for many. A realization that more is not better and that space in our calendar can feel better than a date.
So here we are post Covid, buzzing with commitments and a realization that time passes too fast and we have to edit and honor ourselves and not pack our schedules. Because bumping into our dear friends isn’t happening any more, and scheduling is what we have —we know we have limitations. Time is our commodity we can chose not to trade away.
And so the pruning begins. Ideally, this can be a natural fading of a relationship that is not easy to maintain. Survival medals go to those who choose to not take it personally when the friendship does fade.
But like most transitions and change, inevitably new relationships fill in that are newly nourishing.
My most recent experience was this past weekend, I was at a wedding of a friend I became close with 15 years ago. Although we did not raise our kids together, we got very close when their kids were in their teens and we have watched them grow from that point forward. We have felt part of each others families from that mid-point forward although so many of their friends who were there have known the kids since they were toddlers.
The morning of the wedding they hosted a yoga class outdoors under a blue sky, on the grass with mountains all around. It was magnificent and surreal. As I lay on my yoga mat at the start of class I was conscious that the 10 other women who surrounded me on their mats, I had not known 15 years ago. These were new friends I made in a new stage of my life in my early 50’s. I truly felt a wash with the warmth of gratitude put a big smile on my face.
Friendships are a gift that are not automatic as we all know and they are precious and transitioning. Hey, it’s all a dance and when we can find our people who fill us with joy, we know we are incredibly lucky.