In 2009 I had just moved to our new town and threw myself into a number of committees and clubs in an attempt to build some networks. One of the most defining things I did during this time was to complete a community leadership program. Unlike corporate leadership programs, a community leadership program is just that, a leadership program that is delivered at and focused on the community level.
The first weekend we met, Michelle and I couldn’t stand the sight of each other. We were on our opening retreat which was a weekend retreat where we undertook an Amazing Race style of activity. Michelle and I were on opposing teams. We’d just finished doing Myers Briggs the day before and I’d identified that my sense of justice was very high which as it turned out, came into play when the other team was found to be cheating! Despite my protests, the judges didn’t agree which I struggled with for the remainder of the race until at the end activity, Michelle turned around and verbally slapped me with the retort “get over yourself, we’re all on the same team throughout this course!”.
From that point on, it turned out we had a lot more in common than we originally thought and in the years that followed we lived on the same side of town and saw each other every other day. I eventually moved over to the other side of town which meant we didn’t get the chance to hang out as often and then I started to have kids and before we knew it we didn’t see each other at all. Every time we ran into each other we promised to arrange a catch up, but never seemed to get around to it.
So it was an awesome surprised when another friend who we also met through the program, with whom my friendship took a similar path – great friends, then as kids arrived for both of us we saw less and less of each other – text me out of the blue earlier in the week and told me she was pulling together a bit of a mini reunion of our program. It had been over 4 years since we had all been together in one place so I was keen to get to it.
So I had to work out if the hubby was even going to be home and wrangle how it was going to happen. Fortunately for me, the hubby was going to get home early evening and was able to girls to bed so I could catch up! And I’m glad I did! It was the most exhilarating, side splitting, hysterical night I’ve had in ages (and I wasn’t drinking either!). A few of the boys didn’t make it so there was only a handful of us girls but it was great to remember just how great the year that we spent together during the program and what awesome ladies they are.
So here’s hoping we can arrange another catch up a heck of a lot sooner than it’s taken for this one!
Do you know people that you don’t catch up for years but you just pick up from where you left off when you do see them again? How do you keep your friendships thriving?