Every Day is Saturday

Finding Joy in the Here and Now

Happy Birthday

on March 4, 2014

birthday candles

One of my most enduring friends (that’s a nice way of saying “old” without making it sound like we are elderly, which we are not) had a birthday recently. By way of a birthday greeting she asked her friends to share a memory they have of her. I sat down to do that and realized that it would be more difficult than it had any right to be.

I thought about when we knew each other in high school; we had many activities in common so we spent a lot of time together. We performed in plays together, and we both sang in the chorus. We lived not too far from each other so there was much coming and going. We hung out at her place or mine. We went shopping and to the movies together. I remember talking and laughing and crying with her. I remember chorus retreats and play rehearsal. I remember sitting on her bed talking about boys. But none of these memories is sharp or distinct. That worried me for a while until I figured out why.

I think the reason (apart from my crappy memory anyway) is that this friend, unlike so many others, never hurt me. She never lied to me, or treated me badly, or talked about me behind my back. She never once caused me pain or disappointed me. The times I remember most from those years seem to either involve a boy I was interested in or a girl who had done me wrong. It seems that those memories are the only ones still sharp in my mind. I suppose what they say is true, that you remember things more if they involve great emotion. In my case I can clearly recall situations where I was hurt, or betrayed, or embarrassed. Those come easily to mind even though they are the events I’d much rather forget. But that’s how it works I guess.

The flip side of that, though, is that the memories I have of my friend are so totally intertwined with everything to do with who I was and the things that happened that I can’t separate her from them. She was, and is, a part of me in a very fundamental way. She is woven into the fabric of my past so completely that her bright thread can be found everywhere I look. For those years in high school, and for most of the years between then and now, she is always with me as I continue to shuttle and bob my way through life.

So, my friend, this is my gift to you. You are not just a moment in time to me, you are all the good things I remember, and it is my sincerest wish that our lives continue to weave together until we really are old friends. I love you. Happy Birthday!

************

Thanks for reading my blog!  If you want to know more about me and my journey, check out my book “Everyday is Saturday” on Kindle.  The book is part diary, part memoir, about the first year after I was laid off from my dream job.  I think it has something to say to anyone who is struggling with change.

photo credit: jessica.diamond via photopin cc

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