I started keeping a gratitude journal earlier this year, which has made me more aware of people, things, and experiences that I previously took for granted. It has changed my outlook and attitude, my perspective and awareness. It only takes me a few minutes every day to jot down my blessings and thanks, and what I am thankful for today is exactly what I wrote about over the weekend in my journal.
Today I am thankful for old friends. I recently had the opportunity to get together with some very special people that I used to work with at a local day camp during the summer. It is hard to believe that more than 25 years has passed since we were guiding campers through their daily schedule of arts and crafts, swimming, trail hiking, games, and paddle boating. The years between then and now are an amalgum of experiences, achievements, losses, and separate journeys.
Despite the years and the individual paths we all took, we were able to get together without missing a beat. We each have our own stories, but together, we still were as one. We laughed at old memories and at photos of us back in our camp days. What one person forgot, another person remembered, and so on. Good people and great company. The only downside was that a few of our group were not able to be there, and I hope that we can all get together again in the future.
Elisabeth Foley wrote, “The most beautiful discovery true friends make is that they can grow separately without growing apart.” My friends and I did grow separately, but after the time we spent together, it is obvious that we did not grow apart.
I think also of my two oldest friends, one I’ve known since kindergarten, and one I’ve known since second grade, and how grateful I am for their friendship. We might not see each other like we used to when we were younger, but that makes the time we do get to spend together that much more meaningful. I know I can count on each for an encouraging word, a supportive shoulder, and a ton of laughs.
To my camp friends, my childhood friends, my high school friends, my college friends, my current & former work friends, friends I lost touch with, and, well, ALL of my friends, I am grateful for your friendship. Thank you for the memories we made together, the laughter we shared, and for the footprints you left in my heart and in my life.