From the moment I hugged Mandy (accosted her is more like it) and got shoved by Cathi, they felt familiar and comfortable. We were all trembling from the nervousexcitement of meeting friends for the first time; we were literally shaking and out of breath. It was pure wonderful from the very first second. There was not a single moment of awkwardness.
We found ourselves saying the same thing at the same time and finishing each others' sentences. Even though we are at very different places in our lives, we share more common ground than I ever realized. My heart felt known and understood.
I've always watched with envy movies that depict a group of girlfriends. While I have closeness with a small group of friends, it's only ever been as one-on-one friendships. I've never had that same level of intimacy and authenticity with more than one person at a time. So I wasn't sure how that would play out this past weekend.
I feared feeling like a third wheel. I was scared that being the "quiet one" of the three would make me feel isolated. I thought my feelings of inferiority from not being in the academic world like the other two, would leave me feeling stupid and unloved. All of my fears were unfounded.
Now as I think about those movie scenes that I've always viewed with jealousy and pangs of longing, I can't help but smile. It is possible. I've felt it, experienced it, held onto it with my own two hands. Sadly, I had to leave it behind.
But I know that our time together didn't end with a period. No closure, no termination. It ended with a semi-colon; there's more to come.