Thursday, January 23, 2014

Far-Flung Friends



I don't know about you, but most of my closest girlfriends are far-flung. On the one hand, it's wonderful to have friends in almost every part of the country. Almost any time we travel--whether it be for a wedding, a family gathering, or a trip back to my hometown--there's an opportunity to plan visits with old friends. I love that!

But it's so hard too. One of my best college friends lives in San Francisco and we constantly complain to each other that once-a-year visits just aren't cutting it. We scheme and daydream about trips we could take together, and she's always plugging San Francisco and telling me I would absolutely love living there (my answer: maybe! for a few years!). We have long-term plans to take family vacations together with husbands and kids in tow and short-term plans to have a girls-only weekend in a fun, exotic place (if the budget ever allows). Basically, we're determined to stay close, to keep up to date on each other's lives, and to be friends to each other even though we live hundreds of miles apart.

So you find ways to keep in touch. This friend and I have a standing Friday phone date. Our schedules don't always align and sometimes we have to cut it short but we try to make it a priority. Another friend of mine is a brilliant text-chatter. No matter what prompted the original text, she always makes a point to also ask me how I'm doing and what I've been up to, or she'll tell me something about her own life. These mini catch-ups keep us in each other's day-to-day lives. I have several other friends who are great emailers. We'll exchange paragraphs-long emails about anything and everything and while we might do this only every few weeks, or every few months even, it's a lovely way to stay connected. It takes time and patience to carefully craft a long email and sometimes it's easier to open up and really share your heart in writing.

I believe that great friends aren't easily come by. This quote about friendship is so true--in friendship there's "no glue but mutual liking," and it is "therefore rare." I'm so grateful to have girlfriends who make an effort to protect our friendship and maintain our connection, despite not being able to see each other regularly in person. My goal is to have friends when I'm 80 that knew me when I was 20!

How do you keep up with friends who live far away? I'd love to know.




11 comments:

  1. Katie @ Loverly SheJanuary 23, 2014 at 11:19 AM

    I totally hear you on this one, Kate! I travelled quite a lot before I was married and as a result have friends spread out literally over thousands of miles, which is pretty amazing when I think about it - but the drawback is that I rarely see them now. This is a good reminder for me of how worth it staying in touch really is!

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  2. Oh, this is lovely. Some of my closest friends are "far flung" and I was just reminded last night how our friendships never seem to notice the time or distance. We can see each other and feel like we never left the days of spending every weekend together. Long phone calls every few weeks and quick text messages in between help a great deal. I've also found that I love to send little gifts - usually just a $5 coffee gift card to let them know I wish we could catch up over coffee in person.

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  3. These kinds of friendships are so worth all the effort! My oldest friend and I have been absolute besties since we were seven (even though we haven't lived in the same town since fifth grade ended!) and I just know that she will continue to be in my life until the end. It's just one of those friendships! And I have several other friends, now, who attend colleges elsewhere but we definitely keep in touch. Whether it's long, random text threads, email, snail mail (my fave), phone calls or blogs, we all make an effort to share our lives with each other. It's just wonderful and so, so worth it! (Haha, got a lil mushy!)

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  4. I love you : ). Besties for life sweetie!

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  5. I'm glad this was a bit of a reminder for you Katie, it really isn't always easy or convenient to stay connected but you're right, it's worth it!

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  6. I love that! Seeing friends and feeling like no time at all has passed. And how sweet of you to send little gifts. I'll have to steal that idea.

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  7. There are so many ways to stay in touch, so really it's just a matter of making the effort!

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  8. Such a great post and I can relate to it so much! I have always had friends who live either several hours away or states away! We snail mail eachother quite a bit, text-chat, phone calls and one of them blogging! With my dearest friend who lives states away. We have traditions, times of the year that we can count on being able to see eachother. I go to her place over new year and she comes over the 4th of july in the summer. And if it's a good year we'll have a couple of other times inbetween those!


    Following you now!
    ciao,
    Rachel from topaz n pearls

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  9. Hi Rachel! Sounds like you have such sweet traditions with your friends. Having good girlfriends is so enriching, isn't it? Thanks for stopping by!

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  10. This reminds me, I should call and email my friends more often! It's so hard to keep in touch with girlfriends especially after becoming a mother. Some of my girlfriends are nearby and some are thousands of miles away but it's still hard to keep in touch because life happens. Thanks for the reminder!

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