If there is one thing I have learned since I graduated from college, it’s that as we get older it becomes increasingly difficult to maintain the friendships that we had when we were younger. Our lives become so busy that many of us lose touch with the people who once mattered; we become preoccupied with work, family obligations, and the demands of a changing world. Phone calls become increasingly rare, distances grow longer, and memories feel more like dreams with each passing day.
The last year alone has been one of beginnings and endings for both new friends and old. I’ve lost touch with people who matter to me more than words can describe. I’ve ignored or failed to return phone calls, declined invitations to group events, and made excuses for why I’m not around. Why? I would like to say that I have a good reason for doing these things, but if I am being completely honest with myself I really don’t have one. There is absolutely no reason why I cannot make the time to keep in touch with my friends with even the simplest of things like a phone call.
Looking back at the friends I have made and the memories that I cherish, I am questioning why I have begun putting forth a complete lack of effort in maintaining friendships that got me through some of the hardest times in my life. When I really stop to think about it, I think that it comes down to fear; fear of disappointment.
Throughout our lives, we undergo change in personality, appearance, and values. We learn and experience so many things that redefine our perception of the world. I think that for me personally I’ve undergone so many life changes in the last year alone, that I have this fear of disappointing the people who matter to me. I sit and wonder if the person I am and the person I am becoming will still be the person that initially made those friends. Will my changing self still be accepted by the changing selves of those around me? Will my new lifestyle mesh with their lifestyles?
Part of me thinks that it’s ridiculous to even consider that my best friends and I would drift apart in this manner, but the reality of the situation is that people change; who I am today may not be the person I was yesterday. And I think it has become easier for many of us to let ourselves gradually drift away than to face the idea of reuniting with friends and witnessing how different our lives are becoming; witnessing how far apart we may feel when we are only feet away from one another.
With that being said, I think it’s time for those of us who have begun drifting away to find our way back to the people who matter. It’s time that we start bridging the gap between distance and lifestyle. It’s time for us to put forth a conscious effort in maintaining friendships that helped make us who we are.
If anything, life is only going to get more complicated as we get older. At times we’ll need a shoulder to cry on, an ear to listen to us, and a heart that knows us better than we know ourselves. As we get older we’re going to need the people who stood with us through the darkest of times. We’re going to need our friends. It’s time that we realize this and do everything we can to hold on tight to the people who matter because without a doubt there will come a time when only a friend can help lighten the taxing weight of life.
Until next time…stay classy.
– C.M. Berry
I’d also like to mention that this blog was inspired by one of my best friends (and a future Nova Scotian), Christopher James Jordan. Thank You! And you can also follow me on Twitter @Chrber07 for future writing updates.