KBW, AMW, KMBD, CH, MBB - October 19, 2013
Facebook is a funny crucible of friends.
If you haven't recently, try scanning through your Friends list. I have found at least a zillion categories of folks there:
- People I am currently friends with In Real Life.
- Family Members and distant family members
- People I used to be friends with in high school, college, grad school
- People I used to be friends with at my churches in Houston, in College Station, in Lewisville.
- People I am friends with at my current church in Keller
- RevGal Friends I have met; RevGal friends I have never met
- People I follow because I found them through others and will likely never meet them.
- Oh my, the list goes on. Including the Bishop of Texas, with whom I went to high school, but who I don't remember because he is younger than me.
- People who graduated high school with me, many of whom attended our 30th class reunion this summer. I did not.
Try, sometime, to run through your own Friends list and think how you know each person. It's a great exercise in mental agility!
This past weekend I went down to the Hill Country again, northwest of Austin. Four women I graduated high school with and I met at a condo overlooking Lake Travis (poor Lake Travis, there is not very much Lake in it right now...) for a weekend of talking. We did other things, including much laughing, but talking was the major thing.
We hiked a little bit, cooked and ate, looked at old yearbooks, shared stories, reminisced about sleepovers and teachers, asked "whatever happened to" and did a lot of catching up on our lives. The last time we did this meetup was 11 years ago, when one of us was pregnant and one was breastfeeding a new infant and could not come.
By the numbers:
- None of us attended the summer reunion, and we all felt fine with that.
- Four of us live in Texas, one out of state.
- We have all been married. 2 are divorced and making happy lives with their kids.
- Two have had children of their own; three have not. As one of the three, I have stepchildren.
- Three have seen both of their parents die. One (me) still has both parents living, and one of us still has a mom.
- We have all been through deaths and dramas and joys and caregiving times, including sharing caregiving with siblings (!!!).
- Three of us still attend church (all of us were raised in churchgoing families).
- Some of us are liberal and some are conservative, and I am grateful to say that I am not sure, because that is NOT a topic that was brought up. :)
- All of us have college degrees, several have advanced degrees. Some of us are more satisfied in our current careers than others. Some are not sure what comes next.
- I met one of the girls in 2nd grade and the rest in junior high school. We were in various circles of friends; 4 of us in choir, some of us in some classes together, some of us in most classes together.
- We were all friends with various sets of other friends outside this circle of five.
- We all know something about each other's siblings, parents, and growing-up, so a basic understanding of one anothers' families of origin.
- Additionally, each of us has 30 years of interpreting and understanding our family dynamics on board, too.
- Oh, and I just realized: All of our parents stayed married.
This weekend, my friends held up a mirror for me. I looked at myself in the context of who I was, growing up, and how I became the woman I am now. It was healing in a particular way to talk about life changes (yes, including menopause) and "what do you regret not doing in high school" and also to sketch out how we got here, together.
One of us is a school social worker and does not use Facebook much, because, she says, it worries her to see how much trouble kids today can get in via that social medium.
I hope for today's kids that they are building real, lasting friendships. I hope that at the age of 48 they will have a few folks to get back together with and remember, and celebrate, and laugh.
I hope so.