My latest column from the Albert Lea Tribune. Feel free to share or reblog.
Something About Nothing by Julie Seedorf
Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr once said, “The more things change, the more they stay the same.”
I find that to be true in different venues in life, especially with old friends.
We make friends in our childhood, in our teenage years, in our adult years, throughout middle age and even during our sunset years. Our interaction with even our best friends from early in our life changes as we go through life. We grow up, move, are busy raising children or go on to jobs that take us in different directions. We stay friends and settle for those moments of Christmas cards and chance meetings to connect. Perhaps our personalities changed because of experiences which impacted our friendships.
There are those friends whom we don’t see for years, but we take up where we left off immediately upon meeting them again — the years falling away. And then there are new friends who are really old acquaintances, with which we connect with in our later years, who become good friends.
At this time in my life I feel I am coming back to some of my beginnings. I have reconnected with best friends from grade school and high school. It is easier to stay in each other’s lives because of technology.
My husband and I play trivia on Tuesday night. I have mentioned that before, but what I didn’t mention was our reconnecting with old friends who were an important part of our early lives. I call it karma that life has taken us around in this circle.
Enter my friend from Wisconsin who called and suggested dinner. We met for the first time in years. She pushed me many years ago into my first date with the man that became my husband. At dinner that night she persuaded me to join her playing trivia at our local Legion. I must admit I was scared. I am not the person who remembers history, etc. I was surprised when I felt right at home with the team we joined.
One man was the usher in our wedding. Well … let’s put it this way, he was supposed to be the usher in our wedding. It’s a long story. Another player was my neighbor from my childhood. We spent many nights playing kick the can and spying on our neighbors to see what was going on in their garage. Should I mention bank robber? We had wild imaginations.
One of our quick trivia minds is a friend from our bartending years. We were bartenders together. I loved that job and the people I worked with, especially this person. Further down the table is a woman I shared my high school years with. We weren’t good friends in high school but now we are coming together in a new, fun adult friendship.
The nice thing about a new friendship with an old friend is we do share memories of a time in our life that was special to us.
There are other friends in our trivia group. Some we have had contact with during the latter years and others are brand new friends. But I feel we have come full circle and have come home to a time where we enjoyed life and enjoyed those friendships with people from our past.
One of the things I marvel at the most is that I can be stupid with these friends when it comes to trivia, and I am not made to feel that stupidity. Wouldn’t it be great if we offered that freedom every day to those we spend our lives with?
Our group is a mishmash of intellect. We have farmers, a nurse, a counselor, a couple of office managers, an author, a service manager, a dental tech, plus others and also those who drop in to join us from time to time. It is always a surprise to see what former members come back and offer us their wisdom.
We have all changed over the years. Our lives took us in opposite directions. We all experienced good times and bad times that shaped who we are over the years. The more things changed (us), the more they stayed the same (friendship).
Our bodies may change, our circumstances may spin out of control, but the caring you feel for someone who was important in your life stays there forever, waiting to be rekindled at the right time in your life.
Here is a little trivia for you today. Who said, “Remember that the most valuable antiques are dear old friends?”
I can identify with being an antique, because a ruler that had my dad’s shoe store logo on it that I used in third grade — autographed with my name — was found in an antique store in Iowa.
I am officially an antique and I am enjoying my time with other antiques.
Definition of an antique: “A collectible having a high value because of considerable age.”
Wells resident Julie Seedorf’s column appears every Monday. Send email to her at firstname.lastname@example.org.