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Friday, February 3, 2012

New Home/New Friendships?

     At age ten Butchy had moved from our neighborhood, shattering my heart and changing my world. When I was eleven going on twelve, it was our family making the move out of the old, familiar neighborhood. As I look back over those changes in my young life, it is easy to see just how carefully God had planned for my transition. Before the trauma of leaving the only home I had known, in a neighborhood that knew me, I had pretty well adjusted to maintaining my friendships with the aid of the telephone. Since our new home in this vastly different neighborhood would also have a telephone, I did not lose my friends with the move.
     Even so, I missed our old neighborhood because this one seemed much more metropolitan and not nearly as cozy. I was growing into an adolescent, however, so some of those “little kid” pleasures of the old neighborhood, like frog ponds, were just not as important. It didn’t matter that my friends lived outside of our own neighborhood, or even outside of town, because I could ride my bike when we wanted to hang out and not just talk on the phone. In fact, the move to the other side of town shortened the distance to Linda’s.
     As time went on I did make friendships with kids that moved into our neighborhood; but, thankfully, there was no traumatic shift in current relationships—for me, at least.
     It was the most drastic friendship change for my younger sister, who had to transfer schools at the end of third grade. She would not see any of her Fred Graff Elementary School friends until they entered Junior High, when all of the students from the various elementary schools joined the seventh grade classes in the same building. Very soon after the transfer, however, Glenda began working as one of the student volunteers in the West Elementary School cafeteria.  It was a good place for her to make lasting friendships. (I often wonder if that early exposure did not contribute in some way to her enthusiasm for volunteer work in feeding programs of all kinds in adult life! Whether it is feeding the homeless on a Sunday afternoon, preparing food for street kids on a Wednesday, working on preparing and serving lunch for the disadvantaged local area folks following a church service, or just about any other event where food is prepared and served my sister has her apron on!)
     For both my older sister and me, the school change would have happened regardless of our family’s relocation. Donna would be entering high school, continuing her long friendships with her own best friends. As for me, I was beginning the first of three years of junior high school, under the school system’s new three years each for junior and senior high instead of two and four years, respectively, which had been the plan for about as many years as there had been schools!
     There were a lot of changes when we moved to the new neighborhood but, all in all, it was a very good experience. I so appreciated not having to go through the adjustment of loss of friends and trying to make new ones. God was so good to let me make those new friends well before this move

****Butchy?... Coming Tomorrow

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