Many years ago I was heavily involved in 4-H, a club that focuses on agriculture and leadership. One of the biggest parts of my 4-H life was the summer camp they held every summer. I started going at 9 years old, my first year in 4-H. When I hit 12, the age minimum for being a staffer, an older friend and mentor talked me into signing up. Although I felt I wasn’t ready, I did because I looked up to her so much and she thought I was ready. I became hooked. After several years as the new staffer, I was suddenly one of the older kids and one of the ones in charge of the staff. A group of us formed a pretty tight bond as staffers, and were the ones to go to for anything. My last year was spent as the director of camp with one of my best guy friends, Jason, and it was the best year ever. Together, we ran what was called the best 4-H camp in a long time. Years past held irresponsibility, feuds, and unsynchronized leadership. But Jason and I did our jobs before camp together, and spent camp as a team. It was definitely a great way to end my 4-H camp career.
After camp, we all lost touch, except for one of my current best friends. I moved in with my boyfriend (now ex), and Jason went off to college. Life went on, but I never forgot him or the rest of the gang. Friends of mine, and even my sister, would run into him, and I would think, “I should call him sometime.” This past summer I was an adult chaperone (*gasp! I’m old!) at this very same camp, and his brother stopped by for a visit. I jotted down Jason’s number, but still never called. Today I am glad I didn’t, because I was a mess, still, and I would have hated for him to get a bad impression of me after having been such great friends years before. But two weeks ago he finally called ME and we got back in touch.
Today we went out to lunch. I was a little nervous beforehand. My mom kept pushing me to say it was a date, and I kept having to tell her that it was nothing more than two friends getting together like old times. But I had the same fears as those a girl has before a date. What would he see when he saw me? Would he think I was fatter? Would I talk too much? Would I give him the impression that I thought more of this get together than he did? What if we had nothing to talk about? Would we go out today, then never go out again?
I should never have worried. Seeing Jason was seeing the friendliest part of my past. It was like old times. The waitress had to come back three times before we finally stopped talking long enough to decide what to eat. We talked about EVERYTHING! It was completely natural. He couldn’t get over the fact that I was a mom. I couldn’t get over that my old partying friend was grown up. But despite all that, it was just like old times.
When it was time to go, he asked me out to a Cinco de Mayo celebration with some of his friends. My last fear was answered. Another friendly get-together. :0)
One thing he did say while we were eating, and it goes along with my last post, is how much more confident I am now than I was when he knew me back then. So I have changed…. This lunch just set the tone for my whole day. It’s always nice to see old friends, because they are almost like a part of you. And this one was always a good friend.