A friend of mine whom I’ve not seen in a long time surprised me by driving into town to take me to dinner tonight. (This is a several hour drive from the next state.) This is one of those friendships where we pick right up where we left off even if we haven’t talked in ages. We’ve known each other for a little over fourteen years now, which is the longest anyone (besides family) has stayed in a close relationship with me since I have moved so often during my life.
It was a really wonderful time of catching up on news, sharing about our personal areas of growth right now, and remembering old times. I was reminded tonight just how valuable it is to have people in my life that remember the me that I used to be.
In the day-to-day process of personal growth, it’s easy to focus on the areas where I still haven’t made the progress that I want to have made. The growth is so slow that I seldom take the time to stop and really acknowledge how much I have grown and changed (for the better) over the last few years.
So when someone who knew me then hears what I am doing now and can say, “Wow! You never would have had the courage to do that back when …”, it makes me stop and acknowledge that growth. There are many things that I do now on a regular basis that I never would have considered “back then.” There are layers of self-awareness and emotional maturity that I’ve added in the intervening years that are now just part of my outlook on life and not readily apparent as anything worth remarking on.
It’s a similar joy to be able to look at my friend and see similar growth and maturing that I am able to reflect back as an encouragement. It’s fun to hear of new interests, new awarenesses, and new ideas.
I am feeling remarkably blessed tonight and incredibly grateful for a friendship like this one that has stood the test of time, that I know I can count on when I need it, that helps to remind of who I am, where I come from, and where I am going.
A Note on Comments: A chrysalis is by nature a fragile and vulnerable place to be, so I am committed to keeping this a safe place for me and for my readers. Comments sharing your own journey, even if your experience is different from mine, are always welcome and encouraged. Expressions of support or encouragement are also welcome. Comments that criticize, disparage, correct, or in any way attempt to undermine the validity of another person’s experience or personal insight are not welcome here and will be deleted.