June 10, 2012

Hoapili - Friend (MI part 3)

Everyone has friends that have moved far away. However, I think the difference in Hawaii is that those friends are REALLY far away. Even locals who have never lived on the mainland still know someone who lives there. A visit means you have to get on an airplane. Even a phone call is complicated by multiple time zones.

In Michigan, I have a wonderful group of friends that I've known since high school. And most of us moved around for a while and then ended up in Michigan. Moving to Hawaii I knew it would be hard to give up seeing them so often. And I knew it would take a while to replace those quality friendships. But something funny happened on my trip back:

Toddlers obey well if you tell them "make a silly face"
The friendships picked right back up where we left off. We had a lot of fun reconnecting and had a lot more to talk about since there was a longer time apart. It's comforting to realize that I don't need to "replace" those friends. Of course we are building new friendships in Hawaii, but it doesn't mean that we have to get rid of the other ones.

I was reminded of the Girl Scout Song:
"Make new friends, but keep the old.
One is silver and the other gold."

Also, I was surprised to hear that there hadn't been a girls' night since I'd left. Not that I'm the party catalyst, but that getting a group of moms together isn't an easy task. It helped me realize that even if I lived in Michigan, I wouldn't be seeing these people every day. The reason I was able to spend so much time with these friends in one week was due to my lack of a schedule. And that they had to clear their calendars because it was a "special occasion" for me to be in town.

What really touched my heart was how well our children got along as well. It was like they were reconnecting with their friends too.

It might be blurry, but it's so cute!

Just like the extended time with our families, I realized that how we spend time now is different, but it doesn't change that they are my friends. 

When my best friend went to college a year before me, I was devastated at not having her around. But, thanks to the new technology called "electronic mail," I could head to the library after school and it was just like she was passing me a note between classes. Now we have so much more to keep in contact: free long distance, texting, Facebook and Skype.

It may not be the same as a face-to-face conversation, but it does the trick. And when we are able to see each other in person, I'm so thankful that we can continue along just as we were.

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