This past holiday I did something completely out of the box. It all began with a long-distance conversation with two of my old college friends. And the next thing I knew we had booked a flight to LA. We were going to meet up for a 5-day road trip up the northern coast of California. I had decided this time to skip spending the holiday with family and join my friends to celebrate our 60th birthdays. This didn’t score many brownie points with the family, and I was feeling guilty. But I realized it was okay to break traditions every now and then. Besides, the next moment is not promised to us, and staying connected with friends is important!
My girlfriends and I don’t see each other very often because of various reasons and life happenings. But we are very thankful for our tenured friendships. Our main focus for the trip was love, laughter and sisterhood. The ride along the northern coast displayed beautiful panoramic views of mountains and the Pacific Ocean. We took turns playing our music and sang along as we tried to remember the lyrics while taking in the views. We realized by being together again how important it is to set aside time to nurture and rekindle those lifetime friendships.
Embracing A New Stage in Life and Friendship
We had planned a shopping spree and a visit to Hearst Castle. Honestly, considering our bodies are not physically like they were in our 20’s and 30’s this meant we had to be accountable for each other’s well being. It didn’t mean that we couldn’t continue to do some of the same things we used to do, it just meant we had to be more cautious when engaging in these activities.
The last stop was San Francisco. How could the golden girls miss driving over the Golden Gate Bridge? We bought matching outfits, put on our sunglasses, flashed our best smiles and had someone take pictures of us on the streets of San Francisco. People gazed as we posed for our spontaneous photoshoot. We were having a great time embracing life and creating memories of a lifetime. We were friends of distinction determined to hold on to every moment.
Challenges Made Our Bond Stronger
As we continued on our journey up the coast, we reminisced on the past and the present. We shared how we first met and how we all had overcome challenges and matured from them. We explored topics such as health, family and spirituality. Though we each had experienced detours in our lives our paths managed to still stay connected. We revisited the things that almost destroyed our friendship, but instead somehow made us stronger.
Staying Connected With Your Own Golden Friends
During our trip, we learned a thing or two about staying connected. You can use some of the things we learned to stay connected with your own friends.
- Dedicate time to each other. This could be a road trip like we did, or something else you could do that would make treasured memories. Just spend time together and dedicate it to friendship and each other, nothing else!
- Embrace your current stage of life. On our trip, we had to take into account our current physical limitations. This did not dampen our spirits or limit our adventure. It even made us more aware and considerate of one another’s needs.
- Be spontaneous! Don’t let life’s fun little moments slip you by! We will always cherish our memories taking photos in matching outfits. Our trip itself was a spontaneous act. When the chance to do something out of the usual comes your way it could be a source of joy for years so don’t turn it down.
- Talk about everything. You have grown over the years and life may have brought you challenges. You are not alone. Share your challenges with one another. Share what brought you together. Revisit what made you stronger as individuals and as friends. This will bring you closer together!
As our trip came to an end we knew that we had made the right decision to get together at this particular time. The truth is that we knew we are not able to get together as often as we liked, but that it is most important that we remained in touch. Our sixtieth birthday was one we never would forget.