Having just come back from a wonderful week with childhood girlfriends, it struck me how much we have changed… and how little. We three grew up together, were roommates when we got to the big city once leaving high school, worked together and shared all our secrets. Even a boyfriend or two.
We have all since married, had families and are suddenly 40 years old. How did that happen? Weren’t we going to be young forever? With weekdays of boring jobs so that we could afford weekends spent clubbing and seeing far off places? We’d be together forever and nothing would ever change. Pacts and promises made, and meant to last forever.
Twenty years later we have eight kids, three husbands and three very different lives between us. We live in three different countries, have three different lifestyles and have vastly different careers. So much has changed from the days when we thought everything would remain just as it was.
We all flew in to the beautiful Spanish city where we chose to meet, and stayed in a striking apartment so that we had a stunning living room to hang out in and a kitchen for coffee and cooling the wine. A home from home - perfect for girlfriends. I got there two days early, having come the furthest. I saw the city, engrossed myself in museums, galleries and the vibrant street culture that surrounded me. Just me – with no family attached and a laptop left at home. Strange days, but wondrous ones.
Then came our much anticipated reunion and every single year that had passed seemed to fly into some kind of time traveling machine and flew us all back to our teens and early 20s... strangely, our behavior jumped into that machine too. We laughed over everything, and over nothing. Sometimes we talked about sad things and realized we weren’t as alone as we thought. We spoke of our children and our husbands, of career choices and the countries we now live in. We all look the same. Older, of course, but pretty much unchanged from the days of youth, when turning 40 would never happen and we’d never have responsibilities that really mattered.
So what didn’t change much at all? Our personalities.