Whenever you start a new chapter in your life it can be daunting. After all starting a new chapter means ending an old one. And ending an old chapter implies leaving parts of your life behind. That statement may have some truth to it. But what I have found to be true is that you don’t necessarily leave parts of your life behind. Instead, you grow from every experience you have and every person you meet – good or bad. The lessons stay, the memories stay, the love stays.
But you know you are blessed when people stay. There has been no better proof of this than my community of friends. Throughout high school and college I have gained friends that have been nothing shy of inspirations. But as high school and college have come and gone so many of my friends have dispersed all around the world.
The other night one of my best friends, Kayla, was in town from Los Angeles. She just wrapped up a year in the Jesuit Volunteer Corps working with homeless youth and now is going to be working as a case manager for the same organization, My Friend’s Place.
We decided to get dinner at Casa Di Pizza, one of our favorite restaurants on Elmwood and reminisced about the good old days of college – the parties, the people, the mistakes, the opportunities. Then topics progressed to where we are now and where we hope to be in the future. We talked about the cities we would hope to live in, the jobs we would hope to have and the things we’d love to scratch off our bucket lists.
This small group of friends hasn’t been together since we graduated college, over a year ago. When I stopped to think how much time had passed since we were all together it was mind boggling. But in that moment of sharing a meal and some laughs, it was as if no time had passed – and that is the true blessing of friendship.
Life will bring change with every new chapter you turn to. Friends will move and the tight-knit community that was all in one place, suddenly seems to be hundreds of miles apart. You may go months, possibly even years without seeing one another, but when you do it’s like all the time that has passed was just a second on the clock. Suddenly the laughs and memories consume you and you really understand what true friendship means.
Far and wide, no amount of distance can harm true friendship. It only seems to harvest the appreciation for one another. Once you realize that friends are not suddenly right around the corner, you realize that friendship does not rely on proximity, but rather, communication and love.