Old friends

The tied threads of life unravel in ways you’d never expect. Some of the tightest-holding strands I’ve doubted and a few of those I thought would last forever are loose.

Our mixed net of expectations is never what we envisioned performing above. At certain times in life I’ve felt as if there was no net to catch me at all.

Recently though I’ve had this experience of old friends weaving themselves back into the social tapestry.

Checking an e-mail I’d all but left for dead, the kind of account that’s ridiculously named after some bizarre high school experience, it was an ideal place to discover a link to the past.

An e-mail scribble with the affection of time long-passed and an impatience equally as distant. Phrases like “I’ve been trying to get hold of you forever,” “What have you been up to?” “We should keep in touch,” “I thought you were dead” and “Why haven’t you contacted me?” all rolled into one.

Sitting blankly at the computer, I realized there was obviously a lot of explaining I needed to do.

How exactly do you wrap up an experience that engulfs your teens to your mid twenties in a 200 word e-mail? I notice it seems to happen a lot, people asking to read the chapters of your book but really they only want to flip through the pages and see the pictures.

This one person, I didn’t believe that was the case. But how often can you recall a just out of reach personal connection suddenly taking a swipe of familiarity at you on a social networking site or in passing conversation?

If there was even a part of my life that could spew untold volumes of interest and drama, it’s been in the last six years – but a lot of the time a typical response might be “Life can suck but it’s going pretty good lately, how are you?”

However on rare occasion you find yourself excited and nearly desperate to fire up an old friendship – with the kind of person who can write an e-mail half a decade later and yet it reads as if they talked to you just yesterday.

Slowly you realize that the passage of time has done little to tarnish a friendship carved so deeply in an adolescent identity crisis. No one knows you like these people do. In a way they’ve peeked at the original blueprint of everything you’ve built upon. So despite all the personal changes, life turns and tragedies, there will always be a connection.

My friend Brandy, I must admit, was a McDonough country girl crush of mine in junior high and how the girl loved to tortured me over it, even still today. We grew into close friends over the awkward younger years and were (are) akin to a brother and sister.

Married, living in a different state, operating heavy machinery at a lumber mill, avid outdoorswoman and hunter – that was her page flip in our first conversation.

Here I am again at this next phase in life, having lowered expectations pleasingly disappointed. The threads of my life are again moving at the taut of an old friendship.

I appreciate them coming back into my life with a vengeance and acting like I owed them something to begin with; honestly they’re probably right.

I love how one day a person completely absconded from my mind can suddenly reappear and make me wonder how could I ever forget. It’s a beautiful thing and I feel lucky.

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