Always Keep In Touch

A few years ago an old college friend contacted me through our alumni site. Ellen and I had lived and worked in the same dorm at NSU in Tahlequah. We attended the Baptist Student Union and even took self-defense classes together. It was great to hear from her. Of course, we became Facebook friends, showing off our kids and grandkids. And like me, Ellen was widowed. Sisters in a sorority that neither of us wanted to join.

Now, imagine my surprise when a year later I began seeing condolences to Ellen’s children on Facebook. I went to her page and found that my long time friend had died of lung cancer. I was shocked and suddenly catapulted back in time. Nearly fifty years vanished in a flash and I was back in Wilson Hall, the dorm where we lived. I wanted to turn to my roommate and the girls around me and say, “Ellen died!” But, of course, they weren’t there. I had lost touch with them years ago.

I wanted to tell my late husband, Carl. We had been friends with Ellen and her husband when we all lived in Tulsa after college graduation. They came to our home soon after we brought our baby boy, Travis, home from the hospital. A happy time. Then, three months later, they attended our son’s funeral. At least Ellen told me they did. I wouldn’t know. That part of my life is still a fog.

Finally, I came back to the present. There was no one to tell about my friend’s death. No one to grieve with me. I don’t write this for sympathy. I write it to remind all of us to stay in touch with people we love. High school and college friends. Old neighbors who watched our children grow up. Colleagues. Church friends. And, of course, family.

Life is short. Keep loved ones close. You will be glad you did. You could even make that a New Year’s Resolution. And for the record, my high school girlfriends and I have been lifelong sisters, and I’m now back in touch with my college roommate. I count them all blessings! 

Louise Tucker JonesLouise Tucker Jones is an award-winning author, inspirational speaker & founder of Wives With Heavenly Husbands, a support group for widows. LouiseTJ@cox.net or LouiseTuckerJones.com. 

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