Making friends and influencing people
I haven’t posted for a couple of weeks, as I’ve not been near a computer. I’ve had a lovely holiday, but more about that next post. I’ve just done something, which kind of seems quite silly and bizarre. I’ve enrolled in Uni via Distance Ed. I was talked into it by one of my bosses. And even now that I am on the verge of beginning my study, I’m still wondering exactly what I’m doing. It came as an even bigger shock to find that I had to GO to Uni for a few days to attend residential school. Call me crazy – but I thought that it was called ‘distance’ education because you did it at some distance from the institution you had enrolled in. Silly me!
So off I went, interstate to live on campus for a few days and find out what I’d gotten myself into. In reality I was terrified. Not only nervous of making all the right connections with trains and buses, but I’d be staying with strangers. Hmm…it’s time to admit something. Even at the ripe old age of 38, I was anxious about the social side of enforced confinement with unknown people. I had prepared myself to be self-sufficient and not really talk to anyone for the four days. I had a good book, some music and was having flash backs of high school. I imagined myself sitting alone to one side, hiding behind my fringe and just observing those around me.
Shyness, as I’ve mentioned before, still looms large. I may be older, but I can find meeting new people simply excruciating. After a four and a half hour train ride, I catch a bus onto campus. There are many other students from
Now this is where life gets strange. There were already two people inside. And slowly over the next hour, the others arrived. We ranged widely in age, and came from all over
There was much laughter shared in our cabin, and conspiratorial whispers during lectures. We were supposed to find other students from our own state, and see who lived closest to us, in the hope of creating a study group. Even though we are spread out across many states, we were happy in our little crew. We had formed our own study group. It was more than simple Stockholm syndrome – these people were honestly lovely, and I thank them for making the four days in extreme heat, a long way from home, an experience to remember.
However, even stranger than just hitting it off with these people, was the fact that I think I have made a really good friend. The other person from
What this reminds me, is that I’m very lucky. I don’t have an enormous amount of friends, but I have an amazing bunch of really great friends. In the last couple of years I have also made friends with a colleague. She’s much younger than me, and I’m lucky in that we have the type of relationship where we can be completely open. We have told each others things we don’t tell other people. She’s challenging and inspiring and just gets me completely. I adore you Nej.
My oldest and dearest friend Denise, once said how wonderful it is to have a ‘new friend crush’. I think that sums up what I’m feeling at the moment. It’s amazing to make that connection with people. There are times when life does seem like a Seinfeld episode and that we already have enough friends. But occasionally, along comes someone new who you wonder how you ever survived without them before.
I have wondered what it is that is so special about true friendships. I have often pondered how it is we appear to other people. How you feel on the inside is never the same as how others see you. Is it that through these friendships we see part of ourselves reflected back? And perhaps if we’re lucky, we might see something we like.
A salute to you my dear friends, old and new.