Today was the final potluck of the year for my music group. It was fun as always. But I missed the familiar faces that greeted me 5-10 years ago before I became really involved in the organization as a leader and performer. Catherine, my accompanist and music enthusiast was most sorely missed as she would often accompany us for the group singing at the end. She also performed much of the ritual. However, life marches on and the younger girls (they call themselves 80s babies) have taken over much of the leadership and ritual functions. I am older myself- I'm the absent mom on maternity leave right now (in some sense of thinking about it).
This type of occasion gives me the opportunity to put into practice my resolutions formed as a result of reading The Happiness Project (by Gretchen Rubin). I remembered my friend's daughter was graduating from high school this year so I brought her a small gift. I think she appreciated it. As part of enhancing happiness overall I want to remember and recognize more occasions like graduations, baptisms, and birthdays. It is a small token of friendship but builds over time. Last Christmas we made our usual picture calendar for my 100-year-old grandma and I added all of my family birthdays to the calendar. My aunt ordered a copy for everybody this year. This helps me remember all my extended relatives birthdays because I can see them every day on my calendar!
One of my music sister's started crying during one of the songs we sang at the end of the potluck. At first I thought it was silly (I'm not very sentimental) but soon I started to tear up as well. The song was about how friendships become nearer and dearer as time goes by. It really is true- even though we only see each other once a month (approximately) these women have become nearer and dearer to me as time flies by.
My friend with the daughter graduating from high school was about my age when I moved to San Diego. Her daughter was six or seven when I first met them. Now she's eighteen and I consider her mother a very dear friend of mine in town. We're over a decade apart in age but somehow we just connect. I'm not sure how I found this friendship except that I opened myself up to a group of women interested in the same topic as me- music. And this is how it has unfolded......