Maintaining relationships

I spent three days last week in Delta Junction, Alaska. There’s not a good reason to spend three days in Delta Junction as one can see and do everything there is to see and do in a single day – two at most. However, my reason for visiting wasn’t about the place, but rather my relationship with friends who moved there more than two years ago.

When friends move, we always promise we’ll keep in touch. Before the internet we promised to write letters and call occasionally, but we felt we were doing well to send a yearly Christmas card. Now we promise to email and Skype regularly. However, life has a way of becoming so full of all the “need to dos” that we push off the “should dos.”

Me and the girls at the Delta Junction Visitor's Center. Mosquitos are apparently a BIG issue in Delta Junction!

When my friends moved, I promised to email and Skype – even visit, but the emails became fewer and it became difficult to schedule time to Skype. I found that when we did find the time to connect, their girls (ages 3 and 6 when they moved) had a hard time remembering who we were. This bothered me since we had spent a great deal of time with this family, and were even one of the first people at the hospital when the youngest was born.

 The truth was that I had neglected to properly maintain this important relationship. My husband wisely told me that I needed to visit and was going to visit, even if he had to put me on the plane himself. Knowing he was right, I made my plane reservations.

Seeing my friends face-to-face after two years felt as if no time had passed, but seeing how much their girls had grown made me realize how much I’d missed. Fortunately the girls are very outgoing and helped me catch up on their lives. They were only too eager to show me what they’d learned in baton class, and the oldest showed off her musical abilities on the piano (the song she loved to play is still going through my head!). The bonus was seeing all the amazing beauty and wildlife in their part of the world. I saw a moose grazing by the side of the road on my way from the airport, clear (and I’m sure very cold!) lakes and seemingly endless snow-covered mountains.  

It takes time (and a pinch of *finesse!) to maintain relationships, but it’s well worth the effort. I can assure you I will schedule more time to Skype with my friends, even if it’s just 15 minutes. Is there someone with whom you should reconnect? There’s no time like the present!

*finesse (skill, flair, grace elegance, poise, assurance)