Today brought random thoughts of my grandfather; it is his birthday. We used to joke that winter was not over until there were at least a few flakes in the air on the 8th of April. Today was no different, there was more than a few snowflakes swirling about. It made me smile.
Coincidentally, a gift arrived for me today from an old friend. We reconnected recently thanks to facebook. Our history: We met second semester, freshman year of college. We really hit it off. We had weird similarities but were very different in a lot of ways too. She taught me a lot of cool stuff. I was thrilled that her friendship made me feel more like connecting to the whole college experience. Then I found out she would not be able to return to the school in the fall for sophomore year. I was crushed. She is from Rhode Island, but we made a real effort to remain close. She visited a few weekends throughout the college years. She was in my wedding. We had our sons about 6 months apart. We continued to visit back and forth for a couple of years, making family trips out of visits. She went through a divorce. We tried to stay in touch. The last time I talked to her was when I told her I named my daughter after her. Almost ten years passed, but not without thoughts of what a special person she had been to me. A few months ago, I literally jumped out of my computer chair in delight that I had found her once again. It took only a few emails to catch up on the kids, work, partners and the things that 10 years of life experience has taught us both. I believe we cross paths with the people in our lives for a reason. Although it seemed that our "reason" may have been brief and over in 1999.....we have made it back to each other and I am super grateful for the rekindle of our friendship. Regan sent me a new journal, which is sooooooo like her. She is the one who inspired me to buy the blank, cloth covered journal that I have been writing meaningful poems and quotes in for the past 18 years. In fact, I paraphrased the last few conversations I had with my grandfather in that journal, so that I wouldn't forget what he said to me. So today, I celebrate my grandfather's birthday and the renewal of the gift of friendship. Just like old times, the journal did not come to me blank. She stickered it up and put her own fanciness on the dedication-to-me page. She also bought herself the same journal and stashed handwritten pieces of paper with some of her journal thoughts inside of my pages. This time it is not a blank journal, it is a journal constructed to bring out creative thought. It's a place to "dream while awake" and "live out loud". She sent markers too because this is not a book for plain old pen.
Original regan always wrote her name with lower case letters (renee reminded me of regan in that sense) and she has beautiful, unique handwriting. In these times of electronic mail, I have to say that seeing her actual handwriting on the notes in the book took me back in time almost the way a song does....It is true handwritten notes are more meaningful. I am looking forward to cultivating our renewed friendship and can't help but feel blessed when I think of how the few very meaningful friendships I have, compliment my life.