making friendships last – a story of cross-continent friendships

Just over 10 years ago I walked into a classroom knowing no one. I was going to a school different from most of my friends and at the awkward age of 14 there was a lot of new things going on in my life.

Little did I know is that that day I would meet seven women who would change my life. Though we didn’t become best friends that day or even that month, over the next two years of spending every day together we became very close. Through school assignments, camping trips, late nights, early mornings, and the awkwardness that comes from being in high school we learned to rely on each other, our strengths and weaknesses, and I couldn’t imagine my life without them.

Even before we finished high school we started to branch off to other areas of the world, but by our graduation we had made plans that were taking us across countries and continents. We started to struggle with the issue of how to keep up our friendship and how to make sure that what we had for those teenage years didn’t disappear.

High School Graduation

Enter our Facebook group, aptly titled “Ladies” still going strong after all this time. Now it isn’t the most active of groups, but it is a place where we all are. We don’t have the opportunity to get together often (especially all eight of us) so this is the place where we can connect. Every few months someone starts an update train and we all go around writing a bit about our lives, and catching each other up.

There were opportunities for groups of us to get together, with a variety of success in the number of people. Christmas time generally worked for many people, but also big events such as my wedding brought big groups together and those were even better.

6 of us at my wedding

This fall as our 10 year friendaversary came up we started hatching a plan for something bigger, something more than just a dinner or evening out. We knew that it would be difficult to get all of us together for a longer amount of time, but we were determined to make it happen. And it did.

Last week for three days the eight of us went on an adventure. We rented a house for a few days, packed up our bags and left. For these three days we hiked, played board games, escaped the nonstop rain, made meals, and got up on each others lives.

It was amazing looking around at everyone on these days, watching how little they have changed in the past 10 years but also how much we have all grown up. We have all entered our mid-20’s and our priorities are much different than when we were 14, yet we fit together like an eight piece puzzle.

10 Year Trip

It can be hard to continue friendships when you aren’t together every day anymore and it does take effort. Putting an update on facebook every few months doesn’t take me a lot of time, but it connects me to people around the world, to friends that I want to have in my life forever.

Do you have a group of friends that are far apart? How do you stay connected?

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