Kristen :: fifteen years later

I remember the first time that I met Kristen. Her short white-blonde hair, grey-blue eyes, pixie ears, and heart-shaped face. Her short shorts and rolled socks. We met at the freshmen party, at the end of a scorching summer. We were standing there, partaking in awkward and excited small talk - playing it cool, the boys trying to impress the girls, deciding.

She was a homeschooler like me. We exchanged notes in class - a good girl's rebellion against the rules.

Now, fifteen years later, we talk about parenting and faith. She describes herself as being fiery (a quality I admire). She is highly opinionated (also a quality I admire). She is smart and confident and more beautiful than she realizes.

Kristen :: fifteen years later 1

She married a mountain biking man that understands kids and reads books with voices. She has two round-cheeked babies, 17 months apart, browned from the sun. She dreams of living on a farm, raising chickens and vegetables and peace.

Kristen :: fifteen years later 2

When we stayed at her house these past three days, I saw little bits of paper scattered on countertops. I recognized her handwriting, her laugh. It felt familiar.

I liked her then. I like her more now.

Do you stay in touch with any of your classmates/friends from high school?

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30 comments on “Kristen :: fifteen years later”

  1. It's tough to beat the familiarity of old (or should I say long time) friends, isn't it? In that picture up there it looks as though little L and Kristen's baby could be related!

  2. I just got to see my childhood besties, too. Hooray! It is such a special thing. I totally cherish having lifelong friendships. I am glad you got to spend sweet time with Kristen!

  3. I have a few friends that I stay in touch with and visit everytime I make it back to Michigan. It is fun to go down memory lane and giggle about things we used to do! It is also fun to see where life has thrown us!

    It sounds like you had a lovely time with Kristen! I love this picture of you and your adorable children!

  4. I married my best friend from high school. I don't really talk to anyone else from my HS class. I do keep in touch with a good group of college friends though - like Kristen. ;)

  5. Facebook is a wonderful way to find old friends. I have renewed many friendships there. I am relatively close to my two best friends from high school, but we don't see each other often. One lives just 20 minutes from my son in Florida. Ironically, my best friend now is someone with whom I went to high school, but we traveled in different circles then. We have so much in common and I am so thankful for her. I went to my 51st high school reunion last summer, so I have known these ladies for 55 years.

  6. I stay in touch with several friends from high school, but nearly all of my close friends have yet to enter parenthood, so we don't have as much in common these days. Eventually I think we will though (get busy friends). It's great that you were able to catch up in person with one of your high school friends.

  7. I do keep in touch with a few friends from high school. The main ones are actually friends from earlier that also attended my high school.

    Now, because of facebook, I am in touch with more than I ever thought I would be. I resisted Facebook for a long time partly because of icky high school memories, and then lo and behold I find myself joyfully interacting with people I always liked but maybe wasn't super close to, or happily realizing that we have all grown up more than a bit.

    Kristen seems like an amazing woman and friend. You ladies clearly have a great time together.

    Steph- you do have me wishing I wrote that post I imagined on a dear friend's birthday a couple of weeks ago. It was complete (in my mind) with those vintage photos:) Maybe she won't have to wait until next year after all...

  8. I have some friends from when I was a kid, we are all far flung, but still keep in touch. At Christmas we got to see her and her family again as they were home from Bolivia. She was actually my neighbor for a few years so I think we've known each other about 25 years!
    I now live in the same town as my best friend from high school, but the really crazy part is that we don't see each other that often. It seems I hardly see any of my friends around very often, we stay home a lot or are with my family.
    And for the friend that I can honestly say I've had the longest... when I was in second grade I signed up for a penpal and got 5 from Australia. Only one have I kept in touch with, but she visited in 2006 and is coming again next summer! 24 years!
    I guess I am one of those people that hates to let go of a friend (also a reason why I can never seem to purge my reader! ;) and so you will have to either really insult me or completely ignore me for years before I will let go!

  9. Seeing old friends is such a treat...I'm in touch with a handful from high school...but we all live across the country. I would love a reunion like this though! how fun.

  10. One of the few things that makes me sad about my childhood is that we moved all. the. time. and I was never able to maintain those friendships after a move - maybe for a year or so but then the letters just trickled away... now I live 2 hours away from where I went to High School and I have 1 person that I kinda sorta stay in touch with. But I haven't forgotten many of the others from high school and grade school... it's always fun when I run into someone I knew as a kid/teenager - it happens occasionally :)

  11. Your kids look like they could all be related! Soo cute! I keep in touch with a couple of good friends that I've had since elementary school. And recently I got together with some friends that I went to high school with, but didn't know very well then, but reconnected through facebook...based on their posts I just had a feeling we'd be friends...and we totally hit it off. So nice!

  12. I remember that Stephanie was a cheerleader. I also remember hiking to 7 falls with Tim, Stephanie, Kathryn, and others...
    Glad you guys had time together all these years later with your kiddos--so fun!! :)

  13. I have several friends like (5) that were with me in kindergarten! and we are still in touch on a weekly basis. I actually kind of forget that we've known each other since we were so little! From highschool also. I think that most of my friends are from childhood. But I grew up in Mexico and that's not uncommon over there. My brother is the same way. His friends are from when he was very young. And some new ones, too, of course.
    I wanted to say that you and your friend kind of look alike. At least on the photo that you posted, your smiles are both so pretty.
    I hope my daughters have friends of a lifetime. I homeschool and I'm starting to worry about this a little bit. I didn't used to, but I'm starting to worry more and more. I'll pray for some good friends for my girls.
    The good thing is that I also have friends that I met now that I'm an adult and they are good friends. So, there's always hope.

    1. Your comment intrigues me, Mariza. Why do you think friendships tend to stick in Mexico stick while friendships in the USA tend to disintegrate over the years? Do you have a theory?

  14. Tim may win best comment award for this one! I love that you have been able to see your friend! I am sure it was a welcome and joyful time, being with someone familiar after being away from home for some time. I do still keep in touch with many of my high school friends..and thanks to Facebook, I have reconnected with some of my elementary school friends too (and we are staying connected...not just 'facebook friends' :-)

  15. My daughter was a cheerleader in high school and was on the college team when she died. She worked as hard as the football team if not harder. In college cheer was a sport so she was able to register the first day of registration ... as a freshman! We enjoyed the two games that she was able to cheer at. ;D
    Rah Rah Stephanie!!!

    1. Cathi, I'm sorry to hear about your daughter. I don't think I knew that she died so young. My heart goes out to you - then and now.

  16. My very best friend has been my friend for 52 years. We met at age three when she moved into the house across the street from me. We attended kindergarten and 1st grade together and then I moved away. We stayed friends and spent summer vacations and holidays together and then ... we attended high school together. Our children have grown up as "cousins" and now our grandchildren are. It's a wonderful precious friendship that I know will last through enternity! ;D

  17. I have two of my best friends from high school that I talk with regularily. One lives in my same town and the other lives many, many states away. I sure do love and appreciate them both. Like you and Kristen, I loved them then, but even more now! :)

  18. I only stay in touch with a small handful of people from high school.

    And of course, I married the hottest cheerleader our school ever had. :)

      1. Only for one year. 11th grade. Cheerleading wasn't exactly my style. I will say, however, that it was hard work and I was in great shape. Anyone who ever says cheerleading isn't a sport needs to go to a few practices.

  19. that is sooo sweet! I stay in touch with a neighbor friend, but that is about it I think. It's sad how friendships fade and grow apart.

  20. Awww... Stephanie! Thanks! This was a beautiful post (quite kind and very generous!). I like you more now, too. What you need to do is get your hands on some of those old photos of us. That would be a walk down memory lane!
    I am so grateful for the time our families were able to spend together. We appreciate you soooo much. And maybe someday, somewhere we'll be neighbors! :)

    1. Right before I published this post, I told Tim that I wished I had access to my scrapbooks & photo boxes! I definitely would have included some "before" and "after" photos. Ha! Unfortunately, all of my non-digital photos are in storage back in Tucson.

      P.S. Did I describe the freshmen party correctly as it is imprinted in your memory? You were wearing short shorts and rolled socks, right?

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