Although it seems as though I’ve moved around a lot throughout my adult life, most of the places I’ve lived have been for relatively long periods of time – 10 years or more. I’ve been lucky enough to develop a few really good friendships in each of those places and thanks to social media, I’ve been able to reconnect with many of the friends that I had lost touch with along the way.
My friend Sherri is a perfect example. We met way back when we were in our 20’s. As young working moms, we had a lot in common. We shared the same sitter (Sherri’s mother-in-law), we worked at companies that did business together and we were bound and determined to figure out a way to have it all. This was back in the 80’s and working moms didn’t have a lot of role models so we spent a lot of time figuring out how to get it all done – work, laundry, grocery shopping, preschool, all of it. We would manage to get together for lunch during the week, and on weekends we’d pack our kids up and head to the mall or a park or whatever event that was going on.
That’s not all of it though. During those years, I was going through a very difficult time personally. It was a time when I had very low self esteem and didn’t think I was deserving of love or even friendship. Yet Sherri was always there. She refused to give up on me. She never criticized me and always seemed to be there when I needed help. Looking back, I’m not at all sure I ever would have made it through that time of my life if it hadn’t been for her.
Eventually, I did pull myself together and I moved away and started a new life in a different state. Sherri and I kept in touch, but as the years went by, we let life take over. Our kids were growing up, work, as always, was taking up so much of our time, and now we had aging parents that needed our help. Before I knew it, several years had gone by. When Gator and I moved to Virginia, I once again found myself in a new place with no family around and no friends.
Enter Facebook. Facebook had already been around for a couple of years but I hadn’t really figured it out. I remember the day – I thought, here I am, working from home now, in a new state where I don’t know anyone. This could be very isolating. The kids are all using Facebook to stay connected with friends, maybe I should too. I spent a couple of weeks hunting down (I think they call if Facebook stalking) old friends and family. Then I found Sherri. I have to admit, it was with some trepidation that I sent her a friend request. The old feelings of being undeserving of her friendship had come back. I never felt like I had been the friend she deserved, yet once again, Sherri was there. She immediately accepted my friend request and we were able to catch up on those lost years like they had never happened.
Our kids are grown now. We are both grandparents. This isn’t the end of the story though. Sherri’s youngest son (my Godson) was in a terrible car wreck almost two weeks ago. He’s in critical condition and is still in ICU. I am almost 2,000 miles away and I can’t tell you what a helpless feeling it is waiting for the latest update and wishing there was something I could do to help. Her son is constantly in my thoughts and prayers – I am sending all the positive energy possible. There is one more thing I can do. Now I can be the friend to Sherri that she was to me. I am going to give her the support that she gave me all those years ago and I will help her get through this.
I hope you are lucky enough to have a Sherri in your life!