Thursday, July 5, 2012

Silver and Gold


On a recent jaunt through Value Village, I purchased a rather strange item: a girl guide sash, complete with badges.  I intended to take the badges off and use them for making quaint homemade birthday cards or other crafty endeavours yet to be determined.  As I was paying for it (and internally questioning my judgement just a tad), the cashier gushed about all her memories of Brownies and Girl Guides.  I told her my plans for the badges and she seemed a little...crushed that I was going to take it apart.  I then proceeded to tell her that I always wanted to be in Girl Guides but never was, but now I finally have the sash anyways.  I don't really know where that came from, but I suppose it was true.  I was a bit envious of the girls at school who had the cute little uniforms and the sashes and the campouts.  I attended "Pioneer Girls" at my church instead.  It was pretty great, and we even had badges too (on a banner, not a sash), so I don't know why I was envious about Girl Guides.  One of my favourite memories of Pioneer Girls was the song:

Make new friends, but keep the old.
One is silver, the other gold.

We sang it in a round, and it would go on and on and on.  Is it possible to have silver and gold?  I hope so.  My modern day struggle with envy is not about badges on sashes and uniforms, it's people who seem to be able to stay connected with people for.ev.er.  You know the people I'm talking about, who have had the same core group of friends since they were twelve or five or in utero.  I haven't been very diligent in keeping up with friendships that I wish I had.  I know that it's reasonable to expect friendships to drift as life circumstances change, and it's just impossible to maintain every friendship as life gets fuller, but sometimes I wish that I had just tried a little harder, been a little bolder, and cultivated friendships that instead have waned.  Fortunately, this is a problem that can be remedied, to some extent.  Today I had a friend over for lunch whom I had not seen in many years, perhaps even a decade!  It was so fun to reconnect, and to spend time with somebody who knew me in a totally different period of my life.  There's something special about having friends that you have known for eons.  You become witnesses to each other's life stories; you see each other change, and grow.  Hopefully, those who have known you the longest see you in the scope of your history and encourage you onwards.  Hopefully they have the grace to remember where you started from, and to forget the details of your awkward stage.  I had pretty awesome bangs combined with a killer cowlick in high school.  And braces until the last month of grade twelve.  And severe public-speaking-phobia.  

The person I have been friends with for the longest continuous time period is my husband.  On Canada Day this past week, it marked twelve years since our first date and the beginning of something pretty special.  He's pretty amazing.  Even when he impersonates me on Facebook when I forget to log out, he's pretty kind.

2 comments:

  1. Great post! Yes - I was in PG too...and I do remember wanting to be in GG, but I think that ended once I went to PG camp and had an awesome time.

    I hear ya about the friendship thing. While I feel like I do have long term friendships, lately, with a growing family and the growing distance of geography, I feel like I've let them slide a bit - it's kind of hard to not let it slide when you work, are a parent and don't have a lot of "free" time. But I think the true test of a friendship is getting back together again after a long time and completely reconnecting...it's awesome, isn't it?

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  2. It is great to find that connection again and pick up where you left off after many years. Which reminds me - we should get together again some time this summer for a walk at the beach if I'm out at my parents' place. That was so nice to catch up in person last summer!

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