A few days ago, I decided to look through an old photo album. The album contained photos of old get togethers with friends dating back around five to seven years ago. The get togethers included a couple of weddings, a white water rafting trip and visits to Yosemite / Las Vegas.
I had gone to Las Vegas (late 2004 or 2005, not sure these days) and met up with an old high school friend. The friend had moved to the East Coast for college. After she had graduated, she remained in the East Coast. Despite the time differences, we had remained in touch via letter / phone immediately after high school (remember this was the early 1990's). As I went to a four-year university in 1995, things transitioned to more electronic communications (email, instant messages) all the way through until the 2000's.
For this particular trip, my friend was traveling to Las Vegas for work. Since I was close by, I decided to take some time off to see her as I had not seen her in quite some time. However, I had actually forgotten about this particular trip to Las Vegas. There is a very good reason for this. Sometime between 2003 and 2005, our friendship hit a rough patch. We had patched things up a bit but the Las Vegas trip would end up being the LAST TIME I would hang out with my high school friend.
In looking at the the photos now, I realized the trip to Las Vegas actually symbolized the ending of our friendship. Planning the trip had been difficult though once we got to Las Vegas, things went ok with one exception. My friend had been tied up all day with some personal business. We had planned to go to some places but did not leave our rooms until around 3 PM. I was pretty pissed about it though later I would put things aside.
Though my friend and I left Las Vegas on decent terms, we have not reconnected since. I can't remember what happened but I do remember getting angry about something a few weeks after the trip. I tried calling and emailing but my friend never responded. I remained pretty angry about this for a while.
However, in recent years, I realized that losing my friend was a necessary step for me. My old high school friend had been great for me for many years. But all things change and I had to accept it. In fact, without this happening, I wouldn't have some of the friends that I have now.
I am also fortunate to have a "new friend" that I can talk to quite regularly. This "new friend" is everything I had wished my old high school friend had been at the end: Responsive and generally available.
All things happen for a reason. It just took me a few years to realize!