Friendships are important, life-sustaining. Friends from different stages of my life are crucial in different ways. Friends from youth have seen me develop from a little child into a teenager trying to figure out which direction my life would take (I am lucky to still have these same dear friends as my best friends, who have been with me along the journey for as long as I can remember). Friends from graduate school and early career have seen me traveling toward adulthood, still trying to figure out which direction my life would take! Friends from this unique place I live - Suffield Academy - are tremendous! A built in support network as I became a parent, and people I can always turn to for a laugh or a shoulder to cry on. Friends from town, my army of mom warriors, continue to support me and sustain me as my girls round the curve from toddlerhood to childhood, and I am so grateful to have made these friendships that buoy me up.
And finally, college friends. Friends made during this life-altering period are in many ways like your family. I was on my own for the first time, and managed to be fortunate enough to find a group of friends who would remain in my life for many years to come (and one who would become my husband!). Through the college years, including study abroad and career decisions, staying in touch while living in different cities, and entry into the ring as parents, these friends have been there for me through many a tough time.
There's something about living in such close proximity, sharing meals, and making daily plans together that really cements a bond. We were lucky enough to have quality visits with two of our dearest sets of college friends over break. This was wonderful in so many ways, not the least of which was being able to watch our kids play together, but then being able to put them to bed and share laughs, stories, and games (Bananagrams!) until late in the night. Though it has been years since we graduated from college (15!), it usually feels like we are right back hanging out in Mission or Greylock, getting ready to head to Driscoll for mozzarella sticks.
With so many children and adults in the mix, there were lots of variations on the theme of friendship. All wonderful and fulfilling. And sometimes a little zany. Just like the old days in college.