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When I was six years old, we moved to a new town on Long Island. It didn’t take long for me to notice that there was another girl my age who lived about a block away. I walked up to her one day and asked her if she wanted to be my friend. She said yes and so, for the next four years, Kathy and I were best friends. I’m not sure what exactly ended the friendship, but it was probably something earth shattering like who had cooler bell bottoms or a better chance of marrying David Cassidy! After Kathy, using my trusted method, ”the question”, I was able to make a new best friend, Pat. By then I’d gotten over David Cassidy and happily Pat and I are still close.
One of the pitfalls of moving around is that unfortunately, you can’t bring your friends with you. Occasionally, we are lucky enough to be stationed with those we know well, but usually when we move somewhere new, it’s like starting all over again. At my age, and in this day and age, walking up to someone and asking if they want to be best friends is not the greatest or smartest idea. Plus, I really don’t think it would be well received here in Brooklyn, (or anywhere else for that matter).
The process of making new friends can be difficult. As we get older and, presumably, wiser some of us become less quick to throw ourselves into a friendship. For those of us who move around, time can be of the essence if we want to make new friends. Fortunately, Army life can hasten the formation of friendships. The element of commonalilty in the lives of spouses enables many of us to forge a fast, true, and enduring bond. Regardless of where we are from, what we look like- whatever our differences-it is the similarity in all of our lives that makes many of us gravitate towards, and trust, our fellow Army spouses. The ability to form these friendships can make a difficult assignment bearable. The quality of these relationships allows many of us to make it through a year long deployment, or other challenges. Many times, in the struggles we encounter, it is our friends, who have been ‘there’, or will be ‘there’ one day, that make the difference. Then sadly either they, or we, are reassigned and move.
The good news is that in this era of email, texting, and attractive cell phone plans, it is much easier to maintain these friendships. That is how many of us move and are able to start over.. again and again. We use the common threads of our lives to make it easier for many of us to find one another. Yes, there is sadness when we must leave each other, but, there is also the opportunity yet again, to make new friends. That said though, it was still a lot easier when I was six. Anyone need a best friend???
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