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SINK OR SWIM
When I left home this morning the sun was coming up, shining through the morning haze, and the air was crisp and clear. At 4:30 p.m., still at work, the view out my window could have fooled me into thinking it was 10:30 at night. It's dark out, and lights are on. The company flags are snapping briskly in a row. It could be bedtime for all I know, if I went by my senses, and not by the clock.

The weekend was full* of good food, good meals, cooked by other people. Friday night we ate out at a restaurant that used to be a train station. They had a limited, but excellent, menu, and a basement full of toys down which the kids disappeared whenever food wasn't on the table. Saturday we had dinner at a friend's house, and yesterday at Anders' parents. I'm going out for dinner tonight as well, with 2 of the 4 girlfriends that I first became close to here in Sweden. One is sick, and the last lives in Sydney, so she can't make it anyway.

I met Angie first on Halloween in 1997, when I was hugely pregnant with Martin. He was due November 17th, but ended up being 3 weeks late. Angie had been in Sweden for 8 years at that point, which is the amount of time (nearly) that I have now been here. Almost as soon as the AWC was formed, I met Kathey and Emily and Kelly and we became a gang, along with our husbands, who also really enjoyed each other's company. In April of 2001, Kathey and her husband moved to Australia, and that marked a sea change in all of our relationships. Angie and Kelly and I had all become mothers, and had bought houses and moved outside of Malmö. Over the last 3.5 years, we have been drifting further apart, the ripple from the drop that was Kathey's move spreading further and further out, floating us with it, away from each other.

Tonight's dinner was an attempt to try and recapture some of the closeness. I miss my girlfriends, and it turns out they miss us, too. We've been trying to schedule this dinner since the middle of September, now only 3 of us will make it. I had begun to think that there was no use in trying to swim back to these friends who are drifting away. If time and tide brought us back together, so be it.

But now, after a lovely evening spent reconnecting, finished off with laughter over chocolate and pistachio ice cream, I'm convinced that without my friends I would no longer float. I would sink rapidly to the bottom, bubbles rising all the way, and quietly drown.

QOTD: Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another, "What? You too? I thought I was the only one." —C.S. Lewis (thanks to thinkum)

Really Good Writing Out There Right Now: I exist in real life and I exist on the internet

*burp
 thoughtful
mood: thoughtful
music: Glenn Yarbrough—Love Let Me Not Hunger


Comments

I'm beginning to understand the importance of interaction with people. I read a silly karma profile on myself that said that I'd always been independent in "other lives" but in this one I would learn the value of interdependence. Maybe I'm on my way. Whatever your level of belief in the surreal, the truth that friends are what is important in life is universal.

Sounds like your dinner was nice.

And that link *is* good writing, thanks for pointing it out. Oh my, what the internet has grown to become.

The internet blows my mind on a daily basis :) I like the word "interdependence."

Gah, I love the way you write. It's so beautiful!

:) thank you!

Good story Liz, I am glad you managed to reconnect with some friends you hadn't seen in a while. The best friendships are those which you can be seperated for a period of time, and when you get back together again, finally, the enjoyment of each others' company is just as strong as before. It's usually sweeter too, as you have much to catch up on in each other's lives.

Thanks also for the link to hipstomp's LJ, I enjoyed that one as well. :)

Here's to hoping all your reunions will be good ones, and that your friendships will last throught your life.

Thorleif

It's a shame how some friendships can over time drift apart. I have had it happen as well and while some people turned out to be mere aquintances then friends and I don't "miss" them that much at all (if that doesn't sound awful heh), I still feel sad about some other people who disappeared from my radar. I was just thinking about that the other day, while pondering things, and decided that perhaps I should just try to reconnect.
I am glad to hear that you reconnected with your girlfriends, and I hope that you all will be able to meet up regularly again and keep in close contact. :)

Good God I miss having friends. Never made any the year we were in TX, and don't know a soul here in OH, blah.

Midwesterners are very friendly, don't worry :) You'll be beating them off with a stick before you know it!

[...] I'm convinced that without my friends I would no longer float. I would sink rapidly to the bottom, bubbles rising all the way, and quietly drown.

As would we all. Too rarely, we make the time we need to reconnect and confirm anew what a liferaft true friendship can be. I'm so glad you were able to do this!

Life without friendship is like the sky without sun.

My favourite friendship quote is True friendship comes when silence between two people is comfortable.

I miss my close friends as well, but every time I think I'm forgotten, they make contact and it's as though we were never apart. We have these great conversations - "What? You too? I thought I was the only one!" There is no feeling like feeling so comfortable with someone that you can say what you like - it's so liberating.

I am really jealous of all your icons. Just so you know.

Remember at State, you always wanted to live in a big house with all your friends. You said you would miss being able to just pop in to hang out. It does take a lot of effort to maintain friendships as we get older, doesn't it?

It takes a HUMONGOUS effort. But it's OH SO worth it :)

I have to agree with you on the sun. It drives me crazy that the sun sets so early in the day.

As for friends, friends are a good thing to have. Treat them well, water them, and watch it grow. :)

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