Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Friend (n.) A person whom one knows, likes, and trusts.

There is a reason the past is in the past. That is where it belongs. Tucked safely away, not to wake and come creeping back slowly, only to shout “SUPRISE!” on Facebook.

Years ago my sister ran into an old boyfriend of mine in the grocery store who asked about me and since I was coming down to visit her shortly thereafter she arranged a get together for all of us to meet for coffee. It had been over ten years since we had seen each other. I was semi-excited. How much could change in ten years, what harm could ten years do? Well, if it wasn’t for my sister chaperon accompanying me, I wouldn’t have known it was him. There wasn’t one thing recognizable about him. He was severely balding (not that there’s anything wrong with that), at least 75 lbs heavier (again, that’s okay, we all put on a little poundage as we age), his once curly black hair was now long, thinning and streaked with gray. Oh, the memory of him was soooo much better! Let me keep the memory – his dark curly hair, his Santa blue sparkling eyes! Let me wonder if he was the one that got away. I like thinking about the past, the way it was, the way I remember it and storing it away in a little chunk of amber.

People, as well as all things in our lives are meant to come and go. Some stay with us forever whether we want them to or not, but most are with us for a limited time. We outgrow each other. We learn from each other. And then we move on. 

But now, thanks to the Internet, which by the way, is wonderful and I gaze upon my computer each morning with love, giving thanks and thinking about what a miracle it really is. How it has opened up the whole world for us to peer in at. No longer isolated, we are everywhere! Twitter Dee Twitter Dum.

I know not everyone feels the way I do, but I think it is kinda creepy that people can “find” me on Facebook. Or Myspace, or Linkedin, Bebo, Classmates.com or just a simple Google search. I don’t want to be “found” –

If it is someone that I really wanted to hear from or have in my life, they would know how to find me besides searching on the Internet. They would know a family member, an old friend, a colleague. I don’t want to have to catch up after 15, 25, 35+ years – how ridiculous. “HI, OMG, you look GREAT! How have you been? And what have you been up to? You look just the same, you haven’t aged a bit!”

Really. Hmm. Well, let’s see, For starters, I’ve moved over 9 times since I’ve last seen you, lived in several different states, been married, not once but twice, divorced both times, gave birth to and raised a daughter. I think I had a couple of mini nervous breakdowns, not really sure, could’ve just been too much time listening to old Jackson Browne records. Gone through PMS, Menopause, hot flashes, thoughts of running people over with my car, which by the way, at times I still entertain the idea, buried four dogs, one cat, leased several and bought one horse, owned approximately seven automobiles, had several different jobs/careers, and this is just scratching the surface. Whew, and now I’m starting over, again. Gee, how are you? Good. That’s great. Nice seeing you. Great catching up. Let’s do it again soon, have coffee or meet for lunch. Yes, yes. Of course, that sounds wonderful. Call me!

And after the “reunion” of sorts is over I promise myself not to give away my time so easily ever again. It is a sacred commodity and all I want to do is spend time with the people that I have kept in my circle. I am too tired and too bored to have to repeat and hear all these stories again. They are in my past. And as wonderful as my past has been and it is our past that makes us who we are today, I just want to leave it there. Let it rest. Give me some new material.

So if you add me as your “friend” to Facebook and I choose to ignore the request, please don’t take it personally. I just have more than enough friends right now and I can hardly give them the time and attention they deserve.

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