Old friends, best of friends.

This summer was by far one of the more challenging I have had in recent years. My job was extremely busy, and I had taken on responsibilities that taught me much about myself as a leader and a professional. It has been difficult, during all of this, to really focus on myself. I have taken a step back from that part of my life to focus on the demands of my full-time job. It was not until I was in Vegas for a friend’s wedding that I realized how much of my personal self had shifted to my professional self. It is eye-opening when someone asks you how you are doing and 90% of what you answer is about your work life. Don’t get me wrong, I love my job and I love what I do. What I am saying is that I acknowledge that I need to find a way to take some of that focus and redirect it back to my personal life.

Recently I did reconnect with a college friend. I will keep this person’s name off this post because that does not really influence or change what I am going to write here. I will say that it has been roughly 20 years since we last spoke and it was quite a shock when I heard from the person for the first time this past Spring. I did not quite understand how much I had missed talking with them until we started talking more frequently. We talked about our families, our jobs, and just basic things that had changed in those years that had passed. I cannot say that it feels like those years never went by because I still feel them acutely, but it does feel like going back to those days spent talking about football as we walked back to the parking lot after classes ended.

King's College Homecoming 1992

It just made me think how much I have missed. I think we need to remember, probably more so in the current climate of uncertainty, that things are never guaranteed to remain as they are. We seem to think we can freeze time, then a moment passes, and we find ourselves 20 years later down the road and wondering where those years had gone to. What event could have possibly changed things so drastically that someone we felt like was family, faded into memory? A rhetorical question, but still relevant to where I am hoping to bring us all today.

In a few weeks, I will hopefully see some of those same friends (and often called “family”) that impacted my twenties. As many of you may know, those years change us in ways that we often don’t realize until we are further into adulthood. It isn’t just because we attended college, that is not the reason. It is because we were together during a time that we left the confines of childhood and started to figure out who we were on our own.

I look forward to that reconnection to that part of myself that really saw me change from the quiet, shy girl in high school to the sassy, independent woman I am now. All the years in between have been important, but those four short years changed me so tremendously that I am both anxious and nervous about how it will go.

To my friends of the Monarch Nation, I will see you all soon. In case I forget to say it when I see you thank you for being such a huge part of my life and I am so glad to have you as a part of it again now.


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