It took a pandemic for me to pick up those loose threads and start weaving them back together. A rich friendship of 50 years ended nearly 10 years ago over who knows what. I don’t remember the details of the brouhaha, but I do know that she hung up on me and I was furious. She wouldn’t pick up the phone when I called back, so I wrote a scathing letter.
Since then I’ve really missed her. My ego told me that I was right, and she was wrong, so I just never tried to call again. Of course, her ego was telling her the reverse and she never reached out to me either. Even with all the lovely memories that a lifetime provides and how I missed her terribly, I never called her. I had long ago deleted her email address and, when I got my new address book years ago, didn’t include her address or phone number.
As I lay on my bed a few weeks ago trying to take a short power nap, I kept thinking about her. How was she doing in Sacramento during this “shelter in place?” I couldn’t call her. I couldn’t even remember her number. How could I ever forget her number? She was like a sister to me. She was more like a sister than my blood sister. I remembered her little niece’s voice on the answering machine recording sing-songing her number, “You have reached 916-455-blah, blah, blah.” Then it came to me—her number popped back into my head!
I sat up and reached for the bedside phone. I just had to find out if it would be a wrong number or the right one. Three times it rang, then someone picked it up … “Karen?”
“Yes, it’s me and I’m sitting in the same place I was sitting 10 years ago when you hung up on me.” My old friend laughed and asked if that “gave me chills.” “No!” I said and then we both laughed as though no time had passed.
She said she had forgiven me a long time ago, but it took her a lot longer to forgive herself for throwing our friendship away. I told her I had missed her and thought of her a lot and that I couldn’t even remember what we argued about. Then she told me, “We’re too old for this nonsense! We can never let this happen again.” From there, we talked for more than two hours.
We refer to the 10 years apart as our “gap years.” We’ve since had at least three marathon phone conversations and numerous emails back and forth. We have a lot to catch up on.
The day after I made this initial call to my old friend, I got another surprise. Another friend whom I’d lost touch with called me. I was surprised and delighted! We had a great conversation and promised to get together as soon as we are able. Like me, she was picking up loose threads, too.
Loose threads can be woven back together and made even stronger. Sometimes it just takes a pandemic for it to happen.
Karen Bagnard, a self-taught California artist, has produced a line of frameable art greeting cards for 32 years (www.morethanmermaids.com). She is a mother, grandmother, a “sage” for Sages & Seekers (www.sagesandseekers.org) and an active member of the Pasadena Village. [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]