I just got off the phone with a dear friend (you know who you are) I met in Istanbul nearly five years ago. We only lived together in the same city for one year but the bond was instant. A month ago she got engaged (to a wonderful guy) and now she is in the midst of planning her wedding - and I will be a bridesmaid! We have been trying to find a time to catch up on the phone for a couple of days and finally today, we were able to talk. I miss her dearly and I especially miss exploring Turkey with her by my side, particularly all the coffee shops and restaurants in the city. She is one of the best listeners I know and I learned so much about being patient and strong during times of unpredictable difficulties. She is one-of-a-kind and I can't wait to celebrate her and her fiancé in October!
Finding time to talk with long-distance friends takes a lot of intentionality. I am still learning about this balance but I can tell you that there is nothing like having time to catch up with those you love. I feel like my tank is full of joy and I am grateful for tools like WhatsApp and Facetime to help me connect from around the world. To sum up, according to a recent article in the New York Times, "What all of the experts agreed on was this: Intimacy with other people — whether it’s a spouse, a family member or a friend — is one of the most profound ways to be happier, healthier and calmer. As Dr. Levine said, 'It’s so potent that it will work much better than any Xanax out there.'" Seeking to find time to connect with people that care for us, show up for us and seek to understand us is beyond worth it. So let's all take a minute right now to set up coffee dates, dinner dates or skype dates with the ones we love and miss!
*Somewhere in the midst of writing this post, an earthquake shook Izmir. My husband and I had a little moment of panic and then checked the news. All is well here but it interrupted my train of thought!
If you could have anyone over for dinner, who would it be and why?
Artwork by Alessandra Olanow © alessandraolanow.com