Thursday, January 25, 2007

on friendships and life past college

I find myself really missing my friends tonight.

I mean, the people I think of as my really deep, true, and good friends. People I got to know during my time in college. I miss them, and I find myself acutely aware of the fact that I have no friendships like that in the town where I live now.

Which is perhaps odd, really. I mean, I've lived here now for about eight years. I've met people, perfectly nice people. I would even say that I would consider some of them friends. And yet, there is a difference... a difference in the depth of the relationship, I guess.

I don't know if it's just the experience of having gone through that time in our lives together, or if its the fact that I was so blessed as to make friends with truly outstanding individuals at that time in my life. Maybe I'm a little less open to friendship -- or, better, more cautious because of the role I'm in because of my profession.

Maybe it's partly that, in college, you're around these people a great deal of the time, whereas now I see my local friends a couple of times per month. Maybe it's that all the energy I'm putting into work and the kids leaves little time or room for developing outside friendships.

Maybe I've grown more cynical. Maybe I spend so much time hearing of the pain in others' lives that compassion fatigue sets in and I have less emotional energy to invest into forming new friendships.

Maybe some combination of all of the above.

Regardless, right now I miss my friends. I may just have to call them.

2 comments:

Rachel Rev said...

Steve, I have often reflected upon (and lamented) the difficulty in making and maintaining friendships after school. I have to think that one reason why it is so easy to initiate and nurture relationships in shcool is because, well, you're supposed to. What I mean by that is that in school, everyone is going through relatively the same things, we are at the same stage in life. ONce we graduate into the real world, some folks get married and start friends. Other don't. We enter the work force where we are surrounded by people in various stages of their careers. Some are even on their second or third. When we start college, everyone is new and fresh and seeking to make new friends. But hen we move to a new community after college, we don't know who else is new and so many groups are already established. Plus, the real world doesn't have mixers. Or maybe the real world is just one big mixer. I don't know. But I do know I miss my friends, too.

Peace,
Rachel

steve said...

rachel,

Thanks for your thoughtful comments. I agree with what you're saying. I also think that college is this immense time of change in most people's lives, and going through that kind of experience together (where we're all out in the world for the first time) tends to promote deep friendships. Anyway, thanks again for taking the time to comment. And welcome back!