A few months ago I was talking to a friend whom I've known since the 5th grade about friendships and how he no longer makes the kind of friends that he did when he was younger. You know, those super close friendships where you feel the person really knows you and gets you. The ones where you can look at the other person and just crack up or feel it in your bones when something is up with that person. Friendship at a soul level. While you may still have those friendships with those people, it's hard to find new ones like that.
The difference, I think, is the sheer volume of time you are able to devote to fostering friendships as you get older. Between family and job responsibilities, no longer can you (or should you) spend an entire evening talking on the phone (very often) or chatting until sunrise. My friend and I used to live across the street from each other, and in High School shine flash lights at each other while talking on the phone for hours on end. We would drive around in his parents car all over the city. He took me to the prom when I didn't have a date and I was in his 1st wedding.
Those things don't happen overnight. Time takes time and who has that kind of time anymore? Time has become the luxury that many of us are longing for while chasing other things.
A few weeks ago I had a birthday (you may have heard me mention it.) Anyway, through a blissful coincidence my husband and daughter both had plans the Saturday before. That left me home alone with the kitty (something I rarely get to experience). To my delight Leighanne visited me and we ate leftover pizza and drank iced tea and talked for 3 hours while sitting on the porch. And yes, even though Leighanne did contribute to the nook fund (don't worry if you want to as well, I'll put up a donation link soon ;-) Those 3 delicious hours were the best present ever. Having the time to connect felt rich and indulgent and so satisfying.
As I get older (yes, this seems to be a theme with me lately. I told you I'm in a contemplative mood) but as I get older, I find that some of the very best times that I have involve connecting with people who know me well (and like me in spite of that.) While I've always been very lucky to have a bunch of close friends, it is only now that I am realizing exactly what a true gift that is.