It has been approximately 23 years since I last saw my friends from when I was a little girl. But it felt almost like no time had passed at all in some ways. From the time I was about 4 years old until about 8 years old, my two brothers and I had best friends who were also 2 boys and a girl, and they also were brothers and a sister—JR (whose real name is Jesus which I think is cool and always did!) now Jesi, Marcus and Mercy.
After my family started travelling, I only saw them once or twice and the last time I saw them was only very briefly as a teenager. So much has happened in all our lives—some of us, myself included, in and out of some serious trouble. Big changes in all our lives for sure. Of course, that is often what happens after over 20 years. The beautiful thing was how we have all made it through, are growing and learning, and loving our lives.
But even after all these years, it felt in some ways as if almost no time had passed. I felt like we could go outside and start running around, playing King of the Mountain (and trust me, I had NO problem whatsoever growing up, proving I had what it took to be a King or at the very least, a rough and tumble second!) or football (which I also happened to be pretty darn good at!) or getting into some kind of mischief (some things never change!) I used to do ANYTHING on a dare because there was no way I was going to let anyone have any reason to call me a wimp or anything like that. I could and would do anything, and even if I were afraid to do it, no one would ever know!
If my memory serves me right, which might or not be true, the first person I ever kissed was Marcus on a dare. I had a huge crush on him anyway, but I was terrified to kiss him, but I wasn’t about to let him or anyone else know that! So, we kissed, and it was a very quick kiss followed by both of us rubbing our hands fiercely across our mouths and going, “YUCK!” Secretly, even though I was freaked out by it, I really was glad we were dared to do it. Luckily, kisses have gotten better since then.
Unfortunately, Marcus was not able to join us for the reunion, so I shared this memory with Jesi and Mercy, but with no ability to check in with Marcus to see if he remembers it. I missed not being able to see Marcus, but it was so incredibly wonderful to see Mercy and Jesi! I am so grateful to be reconnected with them after all these years.
I, also, had the opportunity to see many people from my early years, who were a part of the church my Dad started when we lived in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. These were friends of my parents and many were like our family in those growing up years.
Some looked exactly like I remembered. I couldn’t believe that time had seemed to have completely left them untouched outwardly. Some, are definitely aging, and I am so glad I got to see them, as I am not sure if I will see them again. Of course, I have changed on many levels, not only outwardly, but also, in my beliefs and views. I spent a good bit of time just smiling and not saying a lot to some because I know they were sharing from a place of love even though much of who I am and what I believe is so very, very different from them. I think some have read my blog writings and know that I am very different and are very loving and supportive even if we are very different. Some, I feel, if they read and knew all of who I am would be really challenged to say the least. Overall, it was such a treat and a blessing to reconnect after all these years, even if only briefly.
So much of my life has felt segmented. There was the Pennsylvania days, the living on the road days, the living in Jonesboro days, living in Fayetteville days, living in Luna days, and the returning to ground days. It has felt really healing to have these opportunities to connect some of the different threads of my life and begin to weave a new and more whole tapestry of myself and my life.
May we all find ways to reweave the threads from our past, so together, we can create a future that is the gift of a holistic and whole presence in the present.