Yesterday, I had the opportunity to spend the day with a friend I was stationed with back in the dark ages along with our respective spouses. More than an opportunity...it was a blessing to be able to share a day with someone I've know for over 30 years.
Now it wasn't the fanciest plan of a day...or even expensive. We spent the morning exploring a flea market, lunch at a great BBQ joint, and hours spent just sitting around and talking. That would be the advantage of being an empty-nester. No sitter to hire, no trying to fit friends in between school, sports, and extra curricular activities! Just pure, unadulterated time to enjoy the company of friends. Now that's not saying it isn't still difficult at times to schedule friend time between working and just life in general. But as we age, I believe we learn the value of friendship is not something to be taken for granted. We know now our time is not limitless. We know that the sense of indestructibility we enjoyed in our 20's was just an illusion. And we know that the pettiness that plagued friendships earlier in our lives is just that...pettiness.
So here is my new resolve...to make sure I include more time for friends. The laundry can always wait, the grocery shopping can be done tomorrow. The joy of time spent with friends is more important, by far.