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Reconnecting: New Years in Charleston, Part Five

by Tara

Over the past few years, as folks have paired up and gotten married, my group of college friends has nearly doubled in size. I am pleased to say that this expansion has been a joyful one—the new folks fit right in. As I watch the partners/fiancees/boyfriends being loving, supportive, and utterly smitten with people I care deeply about, I find myself brimming with joy and hope. I'm reminded that there are really good people in this world, and that I'm lucky enough to know them.

Mandala Puzzle Guilford Reunion Puzzlers Lucy Parks Playing Homemade Apples to Apples Evelyn Champagne & Homemade Apples to Apples Cards Nick Taking Photographs Ali Dana Seth Lucy Seth & Lucy Ian Playing Cards Against Humanity

Now, our circle continues to expand to include children! It has been wonderful to hang out Jess and Nick's son, Henry, as well as Will and Cristie's daughter, Jordan. And it has been really exciting to hear announcements of more kids on the way! In a few years, this is going to be one hell of a loud, wacky group.

Julia Reading to Henry (& Jess) Henry

On our last night together in Charleston, my friends and I sat in a circle in the living room of our rental house. One by one, we shared how the past year had been for us, and what we hoped for the new year. As people began speaking vulnerably about their varied lives, and the difficulties of the past twelve months, one theme cropped up again and again: not having a community can be soul-crushing. I am so thankful, not only to have my college friends in my life, but also my crew of neighbors.

Now, the dispersion begins, everyone to their own lives again. Each goodbye aches.

Ian and Jess Hugging Goodbye

I love you all, and I can't wait to see you again at the next reunion!