Wednesday, December 15, 2004

Friends Change

This afternoon I got a call on my cell phone from a number I couldn’t identify. Reluctantly I answered and was surprised to hear the voice of a friend. He was calling from his office. I asked him to what did I owe the pleasure of this unexpected phone call and he replied that he was just calling to say hello and see how I was doing because that is what friends do. Indeed, that is what friends do. I was just caught off guard by this because he doesn’t do it regularly and I haven’t spoken to him or his partner, who I also consider a friend, in over a month. This year I didn’t even call them for Thanksgiving and two months before that they were both absent from the guest list to my birthday affair. Yes, I do consider them friends but we just aren’t as close as we once were.

Someone told me long ago that when I realized that friends change I would have to change friends less. When he first told me that I had to repeat it several times in order for it to it sink in. The phone call this afternoon was another reminder of how true those words are. Although he and I both live in the same city and we don’t speak to each other or see each other nearly as much as we used to he is still my friend. We just aren’t as close as we used to be and that’s all right. Recently I watched North Carolina, my friend from high school, struggle with this lesson. One of his closest friends got married. Suddenly, she didn’t call North Carolina as much as she used to. She didn’t visit North Carolina as much as she used to and certainly there were parts of her life that she used to share with North Carolina that she no longer shared anymore. She had changed, much like we all do, and North Carolina didn’t want to accept the change. He wanted their friendship to be what it once was. It never will be. Their friendship had to adjust and he had to meet her where she was in order to maintain the friendship.

I am not opposed to change, change for the better anyway. I want to constantly grow and evolve and I know in order to do that I will have to shed some layers and on the stage of my life there will enter and exit new players. That doesn’t mean that I value anyone else any more or less than I once did but it is all part of life and change. So, I don’t know when I will talk to my buddy that called me today again, I just know that I enjoyed talking to him and until the next time I’ll hold on to that.