The “Belles” and I meet quarterly for lunch always at the same restaurant. Why? It’s comfortable, reliable, and tried-and-true, much like our friendship. There are four of us and sometimes number five comes when her work schedule allows.
What do they have in common? They are all born-and-bred Virginia girls who have welcomed this New Englander into the fold. What do we have in common? We worked together for many years at one of the top developers in Richmond all in different capacities. And after our lives led most of us away from that particular company, we still cling to our friendship – nurturing it at these lunches.
We sit around the table and give updates on our families and life in general. Sometimes our lunches coincide with a birthday and we used to bring gifts, but now we don’t even bother to do that. The gift is being together, really.
But one day something special happened. We had just finished ordering when F. announced we were now to listen up. She pulled out of her purse some index cards and gave each of us three cards. We had a card for everyone else seated around the table. We were to write their name on the card and list three things we admire about that person — three things that we were to share with each other. A little grumbling and giggling ensued and then it got quiet for a few minutes as we did as we were told.
It’s always a bit of a jolt to see yourself through somebody else’s eyes. Aspects of your personality that you are oblivious to or take completely for granted are things others notice and (sometimes) admire. I think all four of us were sort of delighted and surprised about what the others had to say on their cards.
I still have my three cards. They make me happy. Funny how the little things in life can have enduring impact, isn’t it?
Try this next time you’re with your gals, your posse, your dearest friends. You might find you hang onto your cards too.