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Mentoring Mankind with Memories and Musings

Jun 23,   Spring and Summer in Shangri La
Mar 20,   Adventures in Cyber Dating
Mar 13,   Stories of WWII are Fading Fast
Feb 22,   Canst Thou Protest Too Much?
Jan 26,   New Medical Paradigm On Horizon
Jan 16,   COLLEGE DAZE Is On the Horizon
Jan 10,   My Book Is On Its Way to Publication
Dec 18,   Red Letter Days Mark Milestones
Dec 17,   Today Was a Red Letter Day
Dec 1,   the 2nd Year of My Voyage is Over
Nov 20,   I Find Family and Friends at Hallmark
Nov 5,   My Book From the Male Viewpoint
Oct 12,   Music & Movies Mark My Milestones
Sep 18,   My New Life Appears on the Horizon
Aug 23,   Life is a Pathway with Many Forks
Aug 21,   The Importance of Doing My Best
Aug 4,   Life Imitates Hello Myrmidon
Aug 1,   Writing a Book Has Changed My Life
Jun 13,   Plants are Amazing Creatures
May 25,   Will You Accept My Apology?
May 1,   A Journal is a Window on Your Life
Apr 30,   A Road Trip to Shangri La
Apr 25,   Movies as Matchmakers
Apr 23,   Me at Seventy-Three!!!
Apr 14,   Can One Make a Difference?
Apr 9,   a snipit from HELLO MYRMIDON
Apr 1,   What Price Glory, Sweat, Tears
Mar 30,   To Retrieve or Not Retrieve
Mar 29,   Discourse on Decisions
Mar 25,   Memory Retrieval
Mar 24,   I Join the World Community
Mar 22,   Website Lessons
Mar 3,   My Miracles, Part 2
Mar 2,   My Miracles, Part 1
Feb 9,   Phones of Old, Part 2
Feb 8,   Phones of Old, Part 1
Feb 7,   Twitterpated!!!
Jan 25,   Jacob and Esau, Part 2
Jan 24,   Jacob and Esau, Part 1
Jan 10,   A New Goal?
Jan 9,   My Earliest Memories
Dec 31,   2016: Successes and Failures
Dec 30,   2016: My Self-Discovery
Dec 28,   I Finally Hear My Angels
Dec 27,   Angels and Me
Dec 26,   Angels Inspire Me
Dec 24,   the Littlest Angel
Dec 23,   Story of My Name Part 3
Dec 22,   Story of My Name Part 2
Dec 21,   Story of My Name Part 1
Dec 19,   Prior Challenges Part 2
Dec 17,   Prior Challenges Part 1
Dec 16,   My Website Challenge
Dec 15,   Astrological Review of 2016
Dec 14,   North Coast Winter
Dec 13,   an Angelic Intervention
Dec 12,   Birth of HELLO MYRMIDON
Dec 11,   Christmas Lights Fade
Dec 10,   Christmas Art Project
Dec 9,   Finding a Perfect Tree
Dec 7,   Christmas with KW
Dec 6,   Christmas around the World
Dec 4,   Mom’s Story Part 2
Dec 3,   Mom’s Christmas Story Part 1
Dec 2,   Ghosts of Christmas Past
Dec 1,   My First Blog

Guest Blogs

Mar 24,   SusanDay on Being a Grandparent

19th Apr Make Time for Your Friends

Today I read some posts of a young woman who is also on a journey of self-discovery via blog.  She talked a lot about relationships with others. She feels guilty when she doesn’t give her friends the attention that they deserve because she is so wrapped up in her own life. I didn’t realize it at the time, but I did that too, once upon a time, and I can tell her that it didn’t work out so well for me.  I was too busy to go “visiting”, preferring rather to spend time at home on my days off.  And even when I did make appearances I spent as little time as I could at gatherings such as back yard barbecues and neighborhood volleyball games.  I did enjoy the company.  But I treasured more my weekends at home,  where I could do what I wanted and no one would bother me, or require me to be nice to people who didn’t like me or appreciate what I had to offer. 

My husband was happy to watch sports on TV all day with beer in hand, so I could do my thing without interruption.  This was an important time for me to recharge my batteries.  I worked in a job where I was one-on-one with a steady stream of people, mostly young women, counselling them on how to feed and care for their young children.  Never having had one of my own, the two-year olds that often accompanied them really tried my patience at times.  I can say now that I have been retired for almost 8 years that the best thing about being retired is not having to cope with 2 year olds.

But the worst thing is not having meaningful conversations with adults either on a regular basis.  I went from 8 or more interactions a day to less than 8 a month!  For someone who has always been considered a talker, that is quite a shock.  When I look back I can see how much I enjoyed working with most of those moms.  So it is a real treat when I occasionally see them around town and they recognize me and recall our conversations from many years ago.  It reminds me why I chose dietetics as a profession, and makes me feel like I did make a small difference in people’s lives.

However, I can also look back and see that it was that selfish desire to be alone on the weekends that caused me to have no close friends now.  Sure, there are people in town that I call “friends”, but none that just drop by to say hi, or call to invite me over for dinner, or to go to a concert or go shopping with them.  There are no backyard barbecues any more either.  I should have seen this coming, because just before I retired I took off a week every month during the summer to have craft parties.

I spent the whole week each time preparing.  First there was beading, then painting flower pots, and last we made tie dye shirts and towels.  I invited about ten girls to each party, but each time only one or two came, the others were too busy with their own weekend activities to be bothered to attend my small gathering.  I had planned a fourth party to make miniature wooden clocks, but I cancelled it because of the poor response to the other parties. The one neighbor who did come every time knew how important it was to come. She was an elderly lady who herself had put on her annual large winter solstice bash one year, but my husband and I were the only ones who came.  Afterwards, everyone else said that because it was always such a big party they figured no one would miss them......

I should have known after my own party fiasco that the handwriting was on the wall for my retirement to be a solo event.  That was not my first party failure either.  Once a few years earlier I had invited several neighbors for New Year’s Eve, and they all agreed to come.   Only a few of them did make a brief appearance, however,  and all of them were expected at home or somewhere else to actually “watch the ball fall” or to “burn the Christmas tree at midnight”. My party was definitely at the bottom of everyone’s priority list, so my husband and I rang in the New Year alone, as usual, but this time with lots of snacks and party favors.

He passed away shortly after I retired, so I have since then crawled into my shell and learned to be happy alone.  Like the young blogger that started me thinking on this subject, I have never been comfortable at parties, even when I attended a large university that has always been thought of as a party school.  I must confess, I did down my share of Red Mountain while lounging around evening campfires on the beach, but I would have been much happier sitting on the bed in a dorm room with two or three other girls discussing how to solve the problems of the world….. 

Thanks to Facebook, I have been able to reconnect with many classmates from long ago, although most still remain merely Facebook contacts. However, my best friend from grade school was a notable exception.  Although we lived far apart, we often exchanged newsy emails, and we made an effort to talk on the phone or visit each other as often as we could.  And when we were together it was like we had never been apart. Our connection was obvious to everyone. In fact, often people who saw us together wondered if we were sisters. And we thought so much alike that it was scary, even after 30 years of separation. I thank my angels regularly for my time with her these past few years, because she passed away last fall.  I really miss her.

Everyone needs a friend like that, so if you already have one, please do not let your connection get side-tracked by the frenzy of today’s work-a-day world, or allow it to slowly fade and eventually become lost in the ether of time.  Do your best NOW to cement that closeness that will have a value in the distant future that you cannot yet see or even imagine. Do not depend only on texting and social media for this either, as they can’t begin to equal the value that is gained from real face to face togetherness.

My heartfelt message to all the young folks who read this is to do these 3 things:  Do not burn your bridges;  Keep the people you care about high on your priority list;  And always make a special effort to share with them the time they deserve. Take it from someone who has been there,  if you do these 3  things  it will pay rich dividends to you one day.    

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