Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Looking Back and Looking Ahead

My Mom noticed the message on one of my coffee mugs the other day: "Don't Look Back." It's part of a Mary Engelbreit drawing of a girl walking down the road. At a fork in the road, one sign points to "Your Life" and the other sign points to another path called, "No Longer an Option." The girl in the picture has already started down her path.

I have spent the last few days in a spontaneous Facebook explosion of long lost friends coming out of the woodwork. I went looking for some of them, and others found me on their own or through mutual friends. Maybe this type of thing has happened to you, through your blog, or Facebook, MySpace, or another social networking site. The flood of uncovered memories and rediscovered friends (or acquaintances now labeled friends) can be a tad overwhelming. It can also be exciting to see how all those people turned out after years gone by. They are beautiful, grown up, with spouses and families, children and pets, careers and interests I never imagined. The slutty ones domesticated, and vice versa. The thin ones became pleasantly-plump (like me) and the floppy ones buffed up. The townies are still townies and the adventurers cannot be stopped.

Some of their stories make me sad, and others shock me or make my heart catch in my throat. I remember crushes, companionships, and shared dreams. It amazes me that some of these people were once so close to me, vital to the shaping of my life...and though distanced by time and space, we come together again on Facebook. I also have to realize that the roads not taken were not taken for good reasons, and there is no point in wanderlusting about "what if." What if...I lived the life I was meant to live and this is exactly where I turned up?

Life is so unexpected. It really is.

I need a little breather to take in all the new stimulation. But once the dust settles, I think I'll be glad to have reconnected and learned that these dear people are well and surviving in the grand world. I am glad to have known each of them. And I will be thrilled to see what new, unexpected friendships develop at this point in my life. I am ready for a new friend, Universe.


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