The one problem with surrounding yourself with the same friends for years is that you have heard all of their stories and they have heard all of yours. When we get together with the family for reunions or holidays the same stories were heard over and over again. “Remember when Wendy was jumping around in that box and fell into the bush out back? She had to have eight stitches. Doc Stratton stitched her up at his office downtown. His office had that crazy sailfish on the wall...the one that had the eye that followed you wherever you sat?”Another relative would chime in. “Then there was the time she and her friend Cathy snuck out of the house to go to a party. What were they, thirteen? Boy, she was grounded for a year!”
These stories not only get told over and over, but they often take on a new and better twist. “Daddy had to rush her to Doc’s because she was bleeding like crazy. What was it, thirty stitches?”You come to expect the stories from family. They saw you through all of the strange boys you dated, like the one that would run up and down the street in front of your house for over an hour, but never come in. Or the one your sister dated that would never come up to the house. The horn of the car would blow and she’d be gone. We still tease her about that..was there ever really was a guy?
Your family has seen you through the clothes of the sixties; the miniskirts, large bell-bottoms and gauze. The seventies with the halters, silk shirts and maxi dresses and those platform shoes. Then the eighties... well, I spent most of the early eighties in Maternity wear. But even that isn’t sacred. “Do you remember how huge you got with the second baby? I mean HUGE.” I HAVE to listen with family. It’s what we do. We sit around the kitchen table eating Massey’s and reminiscing. The memories and stories are who we are.But with friends we know we can look at each other and smile and simply say, “That’s a good story, I enjoyed it the first hundred times you told it.”-Wendy