What binds us to friends of past and why is it that one feels guilt when the emotion is not truly genuine any more? That talking becomes a chore, that laughing becomes forced? What is it that changes the friends you once used to know and laugh easily with? How can a sacred bond of closeness float away?
People do change and that is one way to explain how friends are no longer close, no longer true, but I wonder if there isn't more of a reason. Are we too "busy"--no time to set aside to have dinner, coffee, wine, see one another's home, meet their S.O.? What is it?
There are so many people who enter our lives and then leave. It's those who visit longer that we call friends.
I like to think that milestones in life bring to fruition those very feelings: who is close? Who can you count on? When I'm down and my husband isn't there, who will I call? Who will pick up? Who will call back? Who remembers? Who has been there?
Lately, especially when it came time to plan my wedding, I had to think hard about who to include, who to exclude--who was "close" enough to be invited. And it was hard. What were my reasons for inviting one coworker over another? Why was my boss invited but not a college friend who spent many a night crying, laughing, remembering with me?
And the past memories were there to remind me. This is what I should do. This is what I am supposed to do.
You're limited, I think, when you reach a certain age about the people you meet and who you will befriend. And it gets harder. No more are the classrooms that throw you into a mix of personalities with people your age, no more are the summer camps and late nights of drinking in college. The "friends of friends"...there are coworkers, random encounters, but even then you should have an established friend base.
Looking back I found it easy, especially in college, to find friendships. And now I feel as though I've outgrown not only some of those friends, but the ones I had in high school. Sure, I have a few important people that I call friends or best friends. Sometimes I wonder if the past is what makes them golden or if it's because they're always there to know me, understand me, and just let me be me.