I was coming into town, “Are you free for lunch?” I group texted. Unlikely anyone would be as it’s the season and family obligations would surely be about to overwhelm. I was wrong, they were. So there we were again, the four of us in one space together for the first time in a decade. The restaurant we chose had sparkly Christmas décor and carols playing in the background elevated the mood.
We’d run a company together, a start up and had the lashings to prove it. Each of us had come from different backgrounds, each was hugely qualified for the positions we had helmed and what experience we lacked we’d made up for in moxie. We had worked long hours, scary running on fumes hours when the numbers didn’t work and we were fast approaching the proverbial cliff. We had been buffeted by betrayals, the kinds that happen in any business. We’d come through rip tides of jealousies I suppose from naysayers, of ego flair ups, out and out lies from charlatan, would be partners. As surely as we had gained experience and fortitude, bits of each of us had got chipped away in the exhaustion of our shared ride. We had on rare occasion bumped up against each other, unwittingly bruised one another usually when one person’s will had had to prevail over someone else’s in order to take a necessary step forward. We had however, stayed the course, ridden the rapids and succeeded in our mission.
With the gorgeous advantage of time passed, the rough bits, the dross, even the story of what we accomplished has faded. Nestled in the comfort of our next chapters what remains now is the gold of friendship, gift wrapped and given by our shared past. We have new conversations now in which no translation is needed…conversations about family members, health, finances, new interests and adventures.
We were strangers once. The distance between then and now is unfathomable. Our friendships won’t change the world, they will in fact except to us, go unnoticed. But we treasure them and hold them and each other dear. It’s the season….and for these dear friends and so much more, I am grateful. I hope you too have the good fortune to be reminded of some lovely treasure you have in your life as I was over lunch this week.