Staying In Touch With Old Friends

By Megan Erbacher

Last week, I met an old friend after work for dinner. When I say old friend, I mean someone I’ve known since I was young, around junior high age. We hadn’t seen one another in quite some time, and it was so good for my soul to catch up with her.

An old friend is a wonderful friend to have. While I cherish friends I’ve made later in life and they are, without a doubt, some of my dearest friends, there’s just something special about someone who grew up and stuck it out with you through the awkward tween years, into the brace-face teenage years and on to the trials and tribulations of high school.

Country music crooner Luke Bryan’s song, “Most People Are Good,” has some touching lyrics, and I particularly love this line: “Cause nobody gets a second chance to make new old friends.”

A simple statement, but the first time I heard that line it hit me like a ton of bricks. None of us get a chance to redo childhood, so the friends we make growing up are, in a way, our permanent old friends and sometimes know us more intimately than people we meet later in life.

I’m happy to say I am still close with some of my old friends, but I’m also sad to say it’s easy for us to get caught up in life and lose touch. Life can be busy, don’t get me wrong, but surely there’s a way we can be better about keeping in touch with friends, and even family.

With social media, I feel like it should be easier today to stay connected than it was 20-30 years ago. However, I think it can make us more disconnected. While social media makes it easier to feel connected because people post photos of vacations, events and various milestones, it is a bit of an illusion. We see these posts so it seems like we’re staying linked with friends, but when was the last time we called that person or sent them a text message?

Social media sometimes makes us believe we don’t need to reach out because we feel like we know what’s going on, at least according to what people post online.

Yes, I do believe social media can be beneficial, and I appreciate all it offers us; but I kind of miss the days of tying up the phone line to chat with friends, or dropping by someone’s house to say “hi.”

After a wonderful three-hour dinner playing catchup with my old friend, it made me want to do better when it comes to reaching out to my loved ones.

Perhaps you all have suggestions that could help me.

What are your tricks for staying in touch with friends and family?