Recently, I flew to my home state of Oregon for my 25th reunion of the Glencoe cheerleading squads. Among ourselves we are affectionately known as the Sally Rallys, with our unofficial greeting of start-the-cheer: "Ready, OK!"
Now, for those of you who are on your fifth reunion of the summer and wish for the bygone days to simply be gone, I can't help you. But for those who have for one tiny, flickering moment, considered getting back in touch with some old friends, I must say, DON'T THINK, DON'T PAUSE, JUST DO IT!
Reconnecting with those old fogies (my children's perception) who have known you in pivotal times, especially perpetual bad hair days, gives you a variety of emotional and physical boosts. It gives you a glimmer of who you once were, and importantly, what has brought you to where you are now (and of course gets your buns in gear to lose a little unwanted jiggle).
Making this happen only takes a few minutes and a cell phone, so I invite you to let go of any excuses. Our high school class didn't even have an official 25th reunion this year. No problem we just e-mailed the handful of gals who we actually WANTED to see. Most everyone lived far away. No problem they drove, flew and brought snacks for the occasion. We weren't sure of the best location. No problem. We reserved a downtown Portland 5-star hotel and did a Marlo Thomas "That Girl" enjoying the city's fab sights.
And worry not that you won't have anything to say to each other. Rely on the ability for women to always talk. It amazed me that after so long we could all still talk, and talk, and talk. We would meander into one of the rooms, thinking about breakfast, talking. Then someone would pass around the snacks, while we're still talking. Three hours later, unmoved, we're thinking about lunch AND WE'RE STILL TALKING, and about everything and anything (one gal has perfected the P.F. Chang's lettuce wrap recipe BY TASTE, another has held a monthly Mother-Daughter book club for years ... )
We laughed about old memories and pictures (a variety of braces and glasses with an '80s feather), and shared new ones. And I was surprised at what the gals remembered (that I had positively held high expectations for our squad), and more importantly, what they didn't (that I had been a total bossy pants, but they seemed, or feigned, surprise). The entire weekend made me realize yet again what amazing, fabulous women we are.
Leaving our reunion I was more highly aware of the great gifts my old friends possess, and how much I learned from them in just a few days. Among others, one thing stood out to me perhaps because I'm such a Type A structure nut which was how things flowed without mega preparation. The days and plans just seemed to fall together naturally (in an attempt to quell said Type A, my personal mantra the whole weekend was "Just be," and celebrated that I refrained from typing it on a goal board and adding three motivational quotes).
Each woman added her own uniqueness to make it happen: One lady was in-the-know about downtown Portland and directed us to great restaurants; one lady was Mary Poppins and produced snacks, drinks, even a First Aid kit on demand; and one lady's simple presence opened doors to which we wouldn't have been ordinarily privy.
Truly, nurturing key friendships from people who knew you when is renewing and enlightening. If you haven't seen or talked with an old high school friend in years, call, e-mail, or pony express them. Don't worry about gained weight, wrinkles or what state your life is in, just do it.
This week I invite you to "make the call" and enjoy what follows. "Ready, OK!"
E-mail: [email protected]