Changing Relationships

I feel a sense of sadness, a sense of loss, when I realize that some friendships won’t last for years and years beyond the season of life in which they were so important, so central to everyday life. Our lives are always changing, and some relationships don’t survive change.

Beth summed it up rather well, I think. Check it out.

I’ve written about this topic a number of times, myself, yet I never seem to be able to make much sense out of the ‘why’ part. I’ve been reflecting a lot lately about friendship and family. Maybe it’s because of how the holidays snuck up on me this year. Maybe I’m just feeling a bit depressed about things. Maybe I’m just tired from working so much over this past month. Whatever the reason, I still feel like I’ve lost something that was once important. Something that, if it had the chance, could have remained an extremely important part of my life even until now.

Looking back at all the friends I’ve had in the various towns and schools, I think the one friend I’ve had the longest that I still have a passing interaction with is Melanie whom I’ve known for about 13 years. Granted, the last time I saw her was over the summer for about 5 minutes when she was picking up her little brother from an event I was at and before that I hadn’t seen her in about 6 years. My friend AJ and I have been good friends since high school but then lost touch and have recently reconnected for the second time. I still occasionally exchange emails with my friend Ryan from high school but everyone else seems to have slipped away.

I still send a few emails here and there to college friends on their birthdays and the like but they, too, have begun to fade out of my life. Only one or two have remained somewhat regular participants in my journey. I’ve known Beth for going on 7 years now, and while our friendship, as with all others, has had dry spells and rough patches, it has remained a source of comfort and joy during some of the hardest times over the past few years in particular. Likewise with my friend Audra. Even though she’s in Texas, I know that she’s just a phone call away and it will be like old times again.

I don’t know why it happens that even the best of relationships can disappear leaving us feeling either guilty or somewhat resentful that one of us didn’t do enough to keep it going. There are certainly many that I would like to catch up with and with whom I’d like to reestablish those once-special bonds. But, then again, maybe I just need to appreciate what we once had as a valuable part of that period of my life and move on. Either way, I want to try to make my current relationships strong and meaningful so they might withstand time’s testing. And as I look ahead towards future relationships, I don’t know what to expect. But I live in hope…

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