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Feelings to Cherish When Old Friends Meet

Updated on April 30, 2017
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MsDora, former teacher and Certified Christian Counselor shares tips for smooth relationships with friends and encounters with strangers.

Returning after five years to a city in the United States where I previously lived and worked, I met with my old friends. The joy I experienced from the reunion had less to do with how long I had known them or how much I had missed them, and more to do with how they made me feel.

If I could, I would have bottled the good feelings so I could pour them out as from a genie, whenever I need a dose of happy memories. Instead, I try here to capture them in print while they still warm my heart.

On days when my sense of happiness needs a boost, reading this page will help me relive the pleasurable feelings I experienced during my visit with my friends. Hopefully, others will relate and share my joy.

Friends

Connected

Soul connections are not often found and are worth every bit of fight left in you to keep.- Shannon L. Alder

Each of my friends had communicated with me, though not often, on FaceBook or on the phone; but even when there was a long pause between conversations, we were certain that the friendship was intact. When we met and our bodies connected in hand clasps and embraces, the physical touch was a solid affirmation that the souls and spirits were also connected.

My friends could still interpret my smiles and my sighs. I still understood when a line spoken with a serious face was intended to make us laugh. We were an emotional and spiritual part of each other and as long as our visits lasted, our happy connection enclosed us in our own happy world.

Valued

No distance of place or lapse of time can lessen the friendship of those who are thoroughly persuaded of each other's worth. – Robert Southey

There is an important reason that motivates us to nurture this bond of friendship that stretches but does not break over time and distance. We value each other. Beyond the doctoral degrees which two of them have earned, and the differences in academic qualifications between the rest of us, there is high regard for the successful strides we have made and for the fact that we have contributed positively to each other’s lives.

On the job, we had cheered each other on when our efforts went unnoticed by management. In the church, we had inspired each other to excellence in leadership. In our homes, we had shared our struggles and prayed for our children. We appreciated the individual worth of each one. When we met, our generous praise of each other rekindled our sense of personal worth.

Rejuvenated

Keep your friendships in repair, and then see if you do not find your horizon broadened, your life sweetened, and the weary weight of this sad old world lightened. ~Silas X. Floyd

These friends had been absent from my life since my return to the Caribbean to become my mother’s caregiver. Had anyone of them been physically present, my load would have been a little lighter; my loneliness would have been less intense. Why am I so sure? We had been practical help and support for each other in the past. Therefore, just being in their presence revived me.

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Free Wallpaper | Source

We talked about the encouragement we had shared in our previous interactions. We laughed about the days when the one on the mountaintop gave advice to the one in the valley, then had to be reminded to take her own medicine when positions shifted. We looked at photographs that showed us working, eating and playing together. We believed in ourselves again, and in the power of togetherness.

Nostalgic

Old friends are the great blessing of one's later years . . . They have a memory of the same events and have the same mode of thinking. - Horace Walpole

“Remember when” began many of our sentences. Then, with our mental eyes we watched the reruns of episodes which told the stories of our personal strides, or showed significant development in our friendship.

One such episode reminded us of a certain friend who scouted through the weekend newspaper, searching for coupons for our favorite restaurant buffet. We ate well even though we could not afford the more luxurious establishments. Whenever we dined out, it was a celebration of our resolve to enjoy our lives with the money we could afford, rather than pine for the money we wished we had. We decided on our three of four course servings, then postured ourselves like princesses. The only difference between us and royalty was that we served ourselves.

During my visit, we discovered that the name of the restaurant had changed, but the food and the service were exactly what we had missed. We were sad that dining together could no longer be a habit, but we were happy to do it one more time.

Privileged

Remember that the most valuable antiques are dear old friends. - H. Jackson Brown

Very dear old friends!

Photo by Kim Scarborough
Photo by Kim Scarborough | Source

People who live long enough to retire are privileged. They are free to visit other retired friends as well as those who have less opportunity for travel because they still have jobs. It was my privilege to visit my three friends who, like me, have retired, as well as the other three who have not. Above all the other feelings described earlier, there was the feeling of gratitude for life with which we all are still blessed.

We are also grateful for the privilege of being friends and having friends--blessings which we do not take for granted. Our friendships are proven and destined to last throughout our lifetime. Added to the joy of our relationship is the fact that we all maintain connection with God, the Source of love that inspires true friendship.

Three Ways to Nurture the Good Feeling of Friendships

  • Schedule regular chats on FaceTime or the telephone. It is great to call anytime, but chat time can also be something to look forward to - every Monday night, every other Saturday night, or whenever the friends decide.

Friendship Letter Poll

When was the last time you mailed a handwritten letter to a friend?

See results
  • Send a piece of yourself occasionally, in a handwritten letter or greeting card. Bonnie Cohen, certified life and relationship coach puts it this way: "You’ve chosen the card, touched the paper, signed your name and licked the stamp. A message you send through the mail literally contains your DNA.”
  • Plan to meet. Whenever possible, attend conferences sponsored by organizations that you both know; plan a trip for sight-seeing in a city neither of you have visited before; or just take turns visiting each other. Every two or five years is better than never.

© 2017 Dora Isaac Weithers

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    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 7 weeks ago from Queensland Australia

      This is a delightful article, MsDora. There really is nothing better than catching up with old friends. I enjoyed this very much.

    • lifegate profile image

      William Kovacic 7 weeks ago from Pleasant Gap, PA

      So happy for you, Dora. A high school friend visited me a few years back, and we enjoyed going down Memory Lane. There are several others I'd like to see again but haven't had the chance. Anyway, I'm glad you were able to meet with yours and you had a meaningful experience. My guess is that not all reunions end in happy moments.

    • jgshorebird profile image

      jgshorebird 7 weeks ago from Southeastern U.S.

      I reminisced along with you.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 7 weeks ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Dora, I feel good for you as your friends clearly made the full effort to get together because you were home. Today I will reach out because of this fine work. For some reason I was made aware of our celebration of the Holy Eucharist (communion) and the breaking of bread with loved ones here. Thank you for sharing this.

    • Maria Dorland profile image

      Maria Dorland 7 weeks ago from Johannesburg

      MsDora, you and your friend look lovable together :-)

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 7 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks, Jodah. It was better than I expected and my feeble attempt to share is limited. It was really wonderful.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 7 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Bill, thanks for kind thoughts. I'd really prefer not to meet than to meet and not enjoy it. My friends and I are blessed.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 7 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks, JG. I've done that too, with other people's work. It shares the joy.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 7 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Eric, sharing in the Holy Communion also has its share of good feeling. Thanks for your kind thoughts towards my friends and me.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 7 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Thank you Maria. I guess the smiles help. Love and smiles go together.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 7 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      I recently re-connected with my best friend after a twenty year absence, and your hub is all of that experience for sure. What a wonderful thing to once again sit as old friends and cherish every moment.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 7 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Bill, thanks for your affirmation. The thrill may be too much if we do this meeting too often; but it is surely enjoyable when it happens.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 7 weeks ago from USA

      I'm so happy for you that you were able to reconnect with old friends and get the love you deserve. I enjoyed you sweet reflections and ideas on reconnecting. What makes my grandma so sad is that all her friends are gone. They provide comfort that family may not.

    • manatita44 profile image

      manatita44 7 weeks ago from london

      You obviously had a great time. I find it cool to reminisce on old times, particularly with those who grew up with us. My friends and I sometimes ate on the same plate, shared the same bed, chair, sofa ...

      So glad that you feel rejuvenated and privileged and great to see at least one of your friends.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 7 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Flourish, the thought of that final separation does surface; that makes it even more important to reconnect as often as possible with those who are still here.

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      Dora Isaac Weithers 7 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Manatita, we had a blast. There were times when I visited with only one friend, but I ate with as many as four at one time. Wonderful reunion!

    • Terrielynn1 profile image

      Terrie Lynn 7 weeks ago from Canada

      What a lovely picture of the two of you. Aren't friends amazing and finding old ones renew us again. I love that you wrote about friends.

    • Tamara Moore profile image

      Tamara BBYCGN 7 weeks ago from I have no idea

      This is a very heartwarming and loving article, and the photo of the two of you, together, is beautiful. I also liked your tips on how to keep friendships nurtured. I also did not know that you were a Christian counselor! This is wonderful!

      Big Hugs,

      Tamara

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 7 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Thank you, Terrielyn. Friendship is a topic that I like much better than I can demonstrate in my writing. Happy that you share my love for it.

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      Dora Isaac Weithers 7 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks, Tamara. I especially like the hugs! Back at you.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 7 weeks ago from British Columbia, Canada

      This is a lovely article about the value of friendship, Dora. I'm glad that you met your friends again. I love the idea of sending a piece of ourself via our DNA when we lick the stamp of a letter!

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 7 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks, Alicia. I share your love of that idea. A handwritten letter by itself is a great gift these days, and that extra DNA bit makes it even more special. Thanks for your feedback.

    • Coffeequeeen profile image

      Louise Powles 7 weeks ago from Norfolk, England

      I agree with the quote. Our most valued antiques are, indeed, our friends. I regularly write hand written letters. I love writing letters and receiving them.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 7 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Louise, you are a gem for writing letters regularly. That mode of expressing our love is more valuable than most people know.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 7 weeks ago from The Beautiful South

      I am so happy for you, Dora. I lost my very best friend in 2005 and my other close friend I have lost all touch with, not to be found at classmates or through friends so I only hope she has not passed on too. But the memories will be here as long as I live and breathe so they live too always in my heart.

      God bless and keep you.

    • profile image

      Michael Milec 7 weeks ago

      Encouraged by your article and a distinctive joy that you have experienced with your friends, my best appreciation of knowing you MsDora comes from the words of Proverbs,

      "Oil and incense bring joy to the heart, and the sweetness of a friend is better than self-counsel. "

      Blessings always.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 7 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks, Jackie. God's blessings on you too. Sorry for the loss of your best friend and I pray that you find your other friend. What a reunion that would be, Anyway, thank God for the memories!

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 7 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Michael, what an encouragement you are and have always been! It boosts my sense of worth to be associated with such an affirming proverb. God bless you!

    • profile image

      Natalie Frank 7 weeks ago

      Your articles are so beautifully written. It seems often in this busy world we let friendships slip away. This is very poignant and meaningful. Thank you for writing it.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 7 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Natalie, I think that in the retirement years when there is a little more time to reflect on what really matters, we try to grab onto our friendships. Your comment is very encouraging. Thanks!

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 7 weeks ago from California

      This is just wonderful Dora! Finding old friends, catching up and realizing that some of the old bonds are still there is a wonderful thing!

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      Dora Isaac Weithers 7 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks, Audrey. I tell you, it is a wonderful thing indeed. The reunion even seemed sweeter in some ways though the initial time we spent together was years longer.

    • denise.w.anderson profile image

      Denise W Anderson 7 weeks ago from Bismarck, North Dakota

      It is interesting how when we see people we know and love after a period of time, it is like our relationship just picks up where it left off the last time we were together! I cherish these times with both friends and family, and look forward to the next time we are together, no matter when it is!

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 7 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks, Denise. So you really relate to my feelings toward old friends and friendships. Unforgettable feelings!

    • Blond Logic profile image

      Mary Wickison 7 weeks ago from Brazil

      I lost contact with my friends from high school until recently. One found me again through Facebook and the others I sent letters to.

      It is just as you said, those connections are always there no matter how long it's been. We now enjoy sharing not just our memories but also our current lives and dreams of the future.

      This article is a lovely tribute to friends, be they near or far.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 7 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks Mary. In the long run our friendships matter more than most everything else. Happy for you that you found your high school friends.

    • Glenn Stok profile image

      Glenn Stok 7 weeks ago from Long Island, NY

      This is a wonderful detailed story of true friendship. Well done!

      I once learned who my true friends where when my Aunt died years ago and many friends came to the funeral. Many traveled long distances to attend, and that caused me to take notice of a couple of friends who lived nearby but couldn't find it in their hearts to wish me condolences.

      I always suspected a weak relationship with those two, but that event made it clear.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 6 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks, Glen. Thank God, for genuine friends. They show up when others make excuses. Good for you that the incident helped you figure out your real friends.

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      Shauna L Bowling 2 weeks ago from Central Florida

      Thank you for sharing this, Dora. True friendship stands the tests of time and distance. I know you and your gal pals had a blast and will always treasure the reunion.

    • MsDora profile image
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      Dora Isaac Weithers 2 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Shauna, you know that's right. We're already planning our next reunion. Thanks for your encouragement.

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