I chatted on Facebook last night with Doug – a good friend from high school – about some old memories. Doug has an amazing memory, recalling far more details about past events than I do. He impressed me last summer at our reunion with his recollections as well.
Doug shared several memories last night that come to mind – things like my St. Bernard, beer cheese, frog gigging, study hall, sharing stories, telling jokes and, of course, talking about girls. I told him I laugh when I think about a silly prank I pulled on him in math class one day. Each of us has things we remember that the other does not.
In my time many years ago as a church youth minister, I recall telling high school students something that they really didn’t want to hear – that the crowd they are so concerned with being accepted by in high school will soon fade in importance after graduation, many of them never to be heard from again. The point was that you should not compromise your integrity or character or who you are in any way to be accepted by people who are only temporarily present in your life. I am thankful in an era of social media that many of those connections can be easily reestablished.
As Doug and I shared our memories last night, a more serious thought came to mind. I wrote this to him: “as much as we fret over the big moments that force our attention, it’s the sum of the smaller things that bring a smile and make a friendship meaningful.” Hanging out together, doing fun things, talking, laughing, being there – these are the things that last and that still bring a smile nearly 40 years later.
I can’t tell you much detail about too many specific times together that long ago. My memory is not as good as Doug’s. Still, I know the end result of years of little things is a big thing – lasting friendship and appreciation of others who have made your life what it is.
Leap year lesson #232 is Friendship is a big thing that is made up of little things.