This weekend I’m meeting up with
tequila and Mexican food three friends from school for some girl time. We originally met in Austin, Texas but none of us lives there anymore. We scattered, like people do after graduating, and then we scattered again. Some of us mostly me had several times of scattering before stretching roots out and you mostly them were well-advised to write addresses down in pencil (remember those address books with actual pages of paper?).
So it’s been 25 years since we first met and that has me thinking of what form this friendship of four women has taken. Our little circle has grown from four women to now include four husbands (all original, first husbands!), eight children, a fabulous dog *ahem* and perhaps a few cats.
But considering how far we all live from each other and yet how we all are putting our lives on “pause” to get together this weekend, this friendship at first glance reminded me of that bush in the yard.
You know the one. It sits off at the side. You can see it from the window if you lean up near the glass. You watered it a lot when it first came into your life but somewhere along the way you quit giving it the attention it deserves.
But it didn’t care. It managed to keep growing, or at least not die, despite your utter negligence.
But that bush is a distant thing and this weekend doesn’t feel like a distant thing. The fact that this gathering is even happening after several years of absence feels more like that old, comfortable chair.
This chair has four strong wooden legs with sides that rise up for you to lean on when you get tired or when you just need to shift a bit. And it has a cushion that over the years has gotten a bit warped, lumpy and imperfect.
But it still offers a soft place to land and hugs you, maybe even better than it did.
Sure, the upholstery may not be fresh, crisp or even-toned like it was brand new, but its worn spots show where tired hands have rested and where the heaviness of a body has been supported.
And even if we’ve ignored this chair too long, stacked magazines on it or moved it to a little-used corner, we need to remember it’s still a functioning chair waiting for us to uncover it and curl up in or hang a leg over the side.
It’s still a solid chair. Let’s dust it off.