Tuesday, September 7, 2021

Shared and Intertwined

Sebastian turned seven at the end of July and I saw in his future, and that of his siblings, a potential for a future I never had.  Until now, birthdays were mainly small family affairs but seven for Seb was very different.  The kids don't have cousins nearby but there is a tight group of family friends with children ages 5 to 16.  Adding to that William's Godparents with their young ones and Matteo's best friend, Frankie, I saw lives shared and intertwined down through the years.  

Growing up in one place, going through school with a changeable but stable group, I foresaw a future where there would be people who might remain close and tell and retell stories of shared experiences, job successes (or disappointments), weddings, births of their own children, and even the tragedies of death and despair.

But on this hot and sunny day there was nothing but noise, laughter, and visiting, oh, so much visiting.  Concerns about Covid were put on hold as people joined together in celebration, to relax and have fun as they celebrated the future of the life on one little boy and, by extention, all of us.

My pleasure in this imagined future is doubly gratifying because I felt its absense so keenly in my own life.  Growing roots doesn't come easily when you move countless times, finally settle in one place and with high school graduation, whatever ties formed, unravel.  

I don't write this as a poor, pitiful me, sob story.  No, I write it with joy and celebrataion.  You see, feeling a sense of aloneness and disconnectedness isn't a life sentence.  Rather, it has become an understanding of the value of the role people play in one's life.  It isn't about numbers of friends but quality of friends.  Seek the friend that sticks closer to you than a sister or brother (Proverbs 18:24).  

Friendship is a gift and as it forms, it can be sweet and exciting, and create a place in ones heart that feels safe and sheltered.  But friendship can also be messy.  Like marriage, friendship takes work to maintain it and keep it healthy.  We're human.  We make mistakes but, true friends will be there, will see you through the rough times and tell you the truth.  So, take the time to learn that while friendship and experience are related, they are very different and distinct from each other.  Friendship is the person.  Experience is what happens to form that friendship.


  1. From Caryn S. - I empathize with you. I wish we could spend more time together, but I am here in the background. Hugs 🤗

  2. From Biene -

    I’m glad things have turned out so well. Yes, I’m sorry you live a little further away from your children, but to be very honest, you do not have to be in California. You have good memories from here, but you are making new ones . Hal and I have made very effort to create Birthdays as super important for our children and grandchildren. Our world is changing and I sincerely hope that these special days will have found roots in impressionable souls

  3. From my BFF

    My family never moved, but because of their experiences and attitudes I didn't have a social network of family and friends either. I was very shy and didn't have any real friends until I came to UCR. When I moved to the island I saw how families interact and help each other, even though they didn't get along all the time. I became jealous of what I never had.Glad that the grans will have what we missed. As you see, it has to start early, and with the parents involved.

  4. That Proverbs quote is so true. I had a friend forever, and she told me once that I was more like her sister than her real sister. I loved her. But I lost her to that big C...the one that has been around for a long time and they cant find a cure for. The one pink ribbons are for. I wont even say the word. I wont give it that recognition. Cherish your friendships. They are special.