A toast to friendship and find something old in something new.
Earlier this week I went out on a limb. I had heard about My Space and Facebook but I didn't know much else. I decided that while the the snow was blowing and the kids were down for a nap I would wander through one of these sites. I chose Facebook just because it was the first one alphabetically.
I found that registering was easy however I realized that I had already revealed more info then I would ordinarily prefer. No woman wants everyone to know her age and birthdate. I had put it out in cyber world that I was OLD. This however was easily corrected. I had dodged a bullet.
Next came the question of how and where do I go. How do I communicate with others? Can I really find anyone that I know? Amazingly enough it's easy. I put that I graduated from York Central and SUNY Fredonia. To my amazement I found friends that I had long given up hope of ever hearing from again. With a few key strokes and an invitation, they were back in my life.
Catching up after over 2 decades was easier then I thought. We shared similar stories. There were moves, divorces, kids, and more kids, illnesses and loses. Some stories were suprising while others seemed to fit just fine.
The memories started to flood back of moments shared. How in my senior year a tight group of us did everything together. Instead of individual crazy pictures for the yearbook, we chose to take ours together. We were in silly outfits because of spirit week. We hung upside down on the jungle gym. I remember almost passing out from having to hang there for minutes at a time. It is immortalized in the yearbook.
As we share the stories of our lives, it is almost as if we have never been apart. Some people went on to do exactly what they had said they would. Others had wandered down different paths. Economics and hardship had also played a roll.
I listened to one friend that said he left his chosen career on the day that an accident had almost killed him. He was one of the lucky ones that survived a roof collapse in a print shop. It killed three of his co-workers. He never went back.
People asked how I had switched from Political Science to becoming a Paramedic. I told them my story. How on a dark night just before Halloween, I was in a car accident. That moment was life altering for me. If it were not for the First Aid training a friend of mine had just finished I wouldn't be here. He saved my life. When I asked him one day how I could ever repay him, he said "Lori Ann - Just take a First Aid class. Some day someone will need it." I hope that I could make him proud.
I have lost classmates too. In fact, we lost one the day I joined facebook. We as a "family" found out together. We were there to comfort each other, to send condolences to those Chris had loved.
These past friends of mine were near and far. Some were as close as the next town over. We wondered how our paths had never crossed. Then I found that one of my dearest friends from college was in Bahgdad. I didn't realize that he had returned to the military. September 11 had had a powerful impact on him. He felt compelled to re-inlist in to the Army. Now here we were, talking by IM (instant messaging) as if we sat across the table from each other. We laughed at things we had done in college. We remembered things that we probably shouldn't have done too. It was decided that some things should just stay in the closet. As they say, "No harm - no Foul."
Facebook had done something that I could not. It had opened doors that long ago had been closed. So as I said in the first sentence. Something old came out of something new. Old friends are now in my life again. We are writing, talking, having fun and laughing.
See - trying something new isn't so bad. Hey, If you are bored try looking up an old friend. You might be pleasantly surprised. I was.