Reconnect. Although it seems to have negative connections, something must have disconnected to reconnect.  Yet, sometimes it is just growth and forward movement that breaks the connection. This past summer I had two amazing reunions.

One was with girls I meet in Sunday school when I was 4 years old and hung with until I moved in grade 8.  I mean we did everything together, sleep overs, hiking and usually with lunch involved,   hide and seek around the light post on Second avenue or just walking around town so we could talk and or search for boys. We grew up together and shared or lives with each other .  Yet we all went our separate ways. It was a small town and didn’t provide a lot of job opportunities, particularly for women. Before the reconnect event people asked if I was afraid. I didn’t have any fear while that was 100%  true …..I had the fear of driving through Toronto. What happens if you don’t enjoy them? It just wasn’t an issue it was the excitement of reconnecting that was the motivation. I didn’t know these people so it was just like meeting strangers and I usually found something I liked about people.

I have never been so wrong. I did know these people. I knew them intimately. I want you to know those friends that you knew when you where so young you didn’t have any filters, any rules, and experiences that teach you how to act in relationships. They are special!  I’m not sure  this experience can ever be recreated. These friends and the uniqueness of these relationships has to do with the times.  It was a small town, a safe town. As children we had freedom. Freedom to wander, freedom to call on friends just knock on the door and be invited in. Freedom  to eat over, sleep over or sit for hours and do nothing but talk. Our parents  felt safe knowing we were nearby and everybody watching out for everyone else. It was a community in the best sense of the word. And this community built relationships that are the foundation I still stand on today. I may not have seen these 4 amazing women for 50 years but they were with me ever moment of every day.  They taught me how to connect with others, they taught me about community, about friendship, about love, about caring, about laughter, about secrets, about being. I owe them so much and yet I took them for granted.

I know this because I had a second reunion this summer my University class reunion. I loved it as well but for different reasons. Mostly it taught me how special my childhood was. I spent my university years in Toronto, loved it because of its lack of intimacy.  Loved it because I could get lost in MY work . I found out who I was, I found out what I wanted to do. I found out what mattered to me, without the distraction of relationship. I met me. Lots of time I felt alone and scared and had to learn to rely on myself and find my own way.  It’s not that I didn’t make friends, it just they were just as busy. The course was heavy, difficult and expensive. We were all trying to succeed in a very large competitive world. I didn’t fit in and yet I was supposed to be exactly where I was, learning exactly what I was learning. I stand on this foundation as well, fortunately it is on top of the solid foundation of my youth. I have the ability to pick out the stones to stand on, enjoy the learning and understand me! This is all  because of the friends I spent so much time with as an  open, innocent child. What a life! I am so grateful for re-connections and all it teaches me.

graduation picture Can you find ME in this Graduation photo?