Treasuring Your Connections

It recently occurred to me how often we overlook the connections/relationships we have with one another. It can be that co-worker who you only see once a week at work, or someone we see pretty often, such as a teacher; we just don't realize often enough how their presence impacts us. 

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On October 5th, my elementary school hosted a reunion in celebration of it's 25th anniversary. Once I received my invite I knew it was an event I had to attend. I hadn't visited any of my elementary teachers since I moved out of town in 2006, thus, the thought of wandering the hallways that I used to meander everyday as a child excited me. The moment I stepped foot into the building, I was overwhelmed with what I'm sure everyone else experienced: nostalgia. The walls, doors, posters, and photographs were the same ones that I grew up surrounded by. However, this time the halls were filled with young children and pre-teens welcoming us back. The many familiar faces I walked past made me realize how much I missed being around people who grew up in the same community as I. But most of all, seeing teachers that I haven't seen for almost a decade really hit me. I wore the biggest smile that made my cheeks hurt while talking to them about what my friends and I are doing now, and what they themselves have been doing after retirement. It was extremely touching going up to my kindergarten teacher and giving her a big hug and hearing her tell us stories from my childhood. Not only was it a great experience meeting my past teachers again, but being able to talk to past librarians, secretaries, and possibly the best custodian ever, made me really happy to have been associated with these people. They cared for our safety, our happiness, and our education, and now, the older Jennifer feels exactly the same, for them to be equally as safe and happy. These people have affected so many childrens' lives positively, I can only imagine their proudness seeing so many of their students grow up to be happy with what they do and have families of their own.

The point here is that connections like these are easily forgotten and not secured due to our effortlessness. Once we miss out on the initial opportunity to build a connection, they will become increasingly unattainable over time. And as we grow older, not many people have the time and opportunity to reconnect with those of the past. Therefore, we should treasure our connections now. We shouldn't wait until we have 25th year anniversaries to realize how much we cared for one another.