Sunday, October 03, 2010
Yesterday, I was blessed with the opportunity to re-connect with a friend who I hadn't seen for about 16 years. She just moved to my state at the end of July and thought she would be located about 45minutes away but in reality it's closer to about 2 hours.
My friend has always been someone who I could tell anything to and she wouldn't judge me and I wouldn't judge her. She has 4 cats (I'm very allergic so I took precautions and had no problems), an artistic streak, an affinity for numbers and finance, a wicked sense of humor and a mind like a steel trap. She also loves water aerobics, working out at the gym, bowling and just being active. Now I remember why we used to be such good friends!
We met through another friend of mine who I taught with when I was still teaching. My teacher friend and I used to take an aerobics class at the YMCA and she invited this woman to join us in our workouts. Since I was into arts and crafts as well as being a math teacher, our minds worked in a similar way and we just clicked. At the time we met, we were all single parents and we used to have BBQs, go dancing, take classes, do crafts, double date, go to the outlet malls, visit museums and galleries, go to the beach, etc. Then I got married and she got a job in a city very far away and we started only writing at Christmas time. We've been friends for the past 22 years but haven't seen each other for the last 16 years.
Out of the blue, this past May, I got a letter from her telling me that she was moving to my area at the end of July. She was building a new home and would be moving from an area up near Canada all the way south. She was very excited about contacting me again as was I! From May all the way through July we really burned up those phone lines and she talked me through a very rough summer. I looked at her as a gift from God - I really needed an old and trusted friend and poof, there she was! What a blessing.
Fast forward to yesterday......
I recognized the voice but she had changed physically. Of course, I'm sure I've changed drastically too after all 16 years have passed. I used to be very slim and now I'm obese. I have to admire the fact that she has kept herself in great shape by working out, eating right (I was always the fanatic about this!) and she finally quit smoking 15 years ago! Yea!
I was a little afraid of seeing her in person because I knew she'd be shocked by my appearance due to my weight. I decided that I wasn't going to let that keep me from a friendship that I had treasured for so long. I am what I am and what I am is a work in progress. I enjoyed my visit and so did she. I realized that she didn't want us to leave when we said we had to go. A little light went on in my head! She enjoys my company for me. She's not going to say, "I'm not going to be friends with her any more because she's gotten so fat." What a relief. I wonder how many other old friends I let drift away because I was ashamed of how fat I had gotten. That bears some thought.