Through modern conveniences like the internet, I learned today that one of my friends from high school passed away. I had not seen her in twenty years; however, the span of time did not make this loss any less sad. However, it does cause me reflect on my relationships.
Through the course of my life, many of my friendships have come and gone. A psychic once told my mom that I do not let anyone get close to me. At first I thought that was an incorrect statement. But in the year since I was told this, I have had time to reflect on it, and now I am seeing that there is validity in it. The question I have is why. Perhaps it is because there have been incidents where after opening my heart up to someone, they have broken it. They may have revealed to me that they are not as loyal to our relationship as I am. Yes loyalty comes in many forms, not just in marriage. Once bitten, twice shy. But I always like to give someone a second chance.
Another possible explanation could be proximity. You see, since I was a child it seems every few years I have moved. First it was because of my dad’s job (military). Then it was due to my husband’s service in the military. After he got out of the military, his current career has still managed to keep us moving. To date, I believe the longest I have lived anywhere in my life has been seven years…the years that crossed over middle school and high school. Now my parents no longer live in that area either. The easy connection to my childhood friends has been lost. Usually by the time I start to feel a close bond with someone, something takes place to uproot us. Sorting out a new life somewhere takes a lot of attention, and it is easy to let distant friendships slip away.
Amazing as it is, social network sites are fairly new. If they had been around 10-15 years ago, perhaps I would have had a better ability to keep up across the miles. After all, it’s so much easier to post something on someone’s Facebook page than to write a letter that says the same thing, different day. However, even on these websites, intimacy in a friendship can be lacking. Therefore, the attachment starts to slip away.
Even my local friends aren’t so easy to keep up with. The day to day activities in my life often keep me distracted. Before you know it, months may have passed since I have seen a particular friend. The only exceptions are those friends that I work with. In the loss of both local and distant relationships, I am not the only one to blame. The door swings both ways. But that goes without saying. Life just has too many distractions. However, I do welcome the distraction of an impromptu visit from a friend. Such visits just do not seem to take place nowadays (at least in my perspective).
I envy those people who have such tight bonds that neither time nor distance interfere with the strength of their friendship. Perhaps one day I will have that bond with someone (other than my husband that is). Currently, a few opportunities do exist, and I would very much like to see them progress. Until then, just because I have lost touch with some of my friends, does not mean that I care any less about them. I do think of them from time to time and hope that every so often fond memories of me cross their minds as well.