Saturday, February 25, 2012

In A Blink Of An Eye - 32 Years

For those of you who have been with me here at The Coloradolady for a long time, you very well know I rarely, or never post pictures of myself. I guess the best excuse for that is I just don't like to take pictures of myself at this point of my life. I don't like seeing myself in photos because I don't see what my mind sees and how I used to be years ago. So I avoid it.

Not only do I avoid photos, but for all of my adult life, I pretty much have avoided lots of things because of the way I felt about myself. I have never even once attended a class reunion, ever for this very reason. I always said, when I lose the weight I will......when I look better I will......and well, for me, I feel like time is running out. Honestly, I know I won't ever be back where I want to be or be at the place I feel like I can conquer the world again, so I better start making the most of it. I know it is pretty pathetic to admit that, but it is the truth.

There was a big change that happened internally for me at the beginning of this year. I don't want to go into much of that right now, but I am so thankful it happened and changes are being made and made rather rapidly. That is a huge thing for me, as some struggles are not so hard anymore and walls are coming down. I am making progress on goals that I felt were unattainable and in doing so, my self image has improved and I see how unimportant that really is in the big scheme of things. I am thankful beyond words, because I want to share a special moment in my life that happened this last week....and it was 32 years in the making.

I have a friend from high school whom I have not seen since we graduated in 1980. We reconnected on Facebook a few years ago and keep in touch that way. She does not live here in Texas, she lives in Ohio and is away from all her childhood friends. When she and her family were making their way to Texas while on a family vacation, I knew in my heart of hearts I was going to see her no matter how insecure I felt with myself. 

 Mary and myself...Spring of 1978

This is a picture of us in our sophomore year of high school. This is one of the hand full of photos I have of my years in high school. Back then, we just did not take cameras to school and when we did it was usually at the end of the year. It certainly was not like it is today when the kids are able to document their every move via media. This was taken at the end of our sophomore year right before summer.

 Mary and myself.....February 23, 2012

And this was last week.....34 years since the first photo was taken, and 32 years since I last saw my friend in person. And yes, to me she looks the same! We met for breakfast and spent a good part of the day together and had the best time. Talking was none stop, and I did not even finish my food as it got too cold while we were catching up. It was like all those years melted away and we picked up like it was yesterday when we last saw one another. I can't remember when I had so much fun and so thankful for the time we spent together.

We even walked around an antique mall and a vintage retro store that was filled with memories from the 1970's. It was for me a very special day and I am planning to see her later this year. (she just does not know it yet)

The most important lesson here is that all that silly worry about not measuring up and feeling bad about myself made absolutely no difference when we stepped out of the car and melted away like a slab of butter on a 120 degree day. What a silly thing that had controlled me most of my adult life.....I feel so grateful that finally I am over all of that silly matter how it came about, I am grateful. I am grateful for my friend, and having that precious time with her while she was here. It meant the world to me.

.....and you know the icing on the cake??? I got an invite from another classmate to a party coming up right after I spent the day having such a good time......when I read it, for an instant I felt that old dread of  "oh, I can't go....thing trying to work itself in my mind" But I pushed those feelings away and out of my head...and I marched in the living room and told my husband we were going to a party.....he looked at me like I had sprouted horns and turned green!! I am sure he thought, "Who are you and what have you done with my wife!"  No matter even if I feel a bit self conscious, I am going and can't wait to do so.

I think with the idea of turning 50 this year has been such a shock as to where have all the years gone that it has shocked my brain, or maybe I am finally getting comfortable in my own skin....after all, there certainly is a lot more skin to feel comfortable with rather than when I was seventeen for goodness sakes.

I felt like writing this down so I could go back to it when I needed to reread how I felt today. If you have never struggled with self doubt, let me say it is not easy living with it and even harder to move past it. But moving past those feelings is when living your life to the fullest really makes sense. It is the most amazing feeling and such treasured moments can come from letting go. It took me a long time....32 sad is that....but I have made it past the stuff that has held me at bay to what is really important in life and I could not be more happier about that!

Thanks Mary, for taking the time from your vacation and spending it with meant more to me than you could ever possibly know. It was an amazing day!

*** I am also thankful that through blogging, I see things differently too. I knew when I was driving to meet Mary that morning that I wanted to take a photo in the parking lot because I remembered this photo from long ago. That is how bloggers think....and I am most grateful for that too!! Both photos are treasures now.


  1. I can relate to everything you said! Everything! Wow....

  2. What a wonderful story! Some parts were like they were written about me. I don't know how many wonderful memories I've missed out on. I admire your strength as breaking down those walls is not an easy task. I'm going to take some of your advice to heart and try to break down some of my walls (I think I have an apartment complex built around me LOL). Very inspirational, thank you so much for sharing.

  3. You must surly have been following me around and gathered information about my life. This is my life to a T. I honestly thought I was the only one who felt this way and stayed hidden in the walls of my house. I don't want anyone I knew from my younger days to see me now.

    What a inspirational message and one that pierced my heart this morning. In a big way. I need to wake up myself and just flat get over myself. Who cares anyway??

    My hat is off to you this morning. I would have never had the courage to write this much less post it to my blog. I would have been afraid of what people thought of me. (another issue) But in reading your words, and feelings it triggered something in me that wants to make some changes. I want what you had this past week. How amazing.

    Thank you for this post. It spoke volumes to me this morning. I don't have to courage to sign my blog address to this....but I will sign anon. Hugs sweet friend.

  4. I have tears in my eyes as I read this. I know what you are talking about. I came to your blog through the blog hop and feel like I have been given a gift. I am going to pursue making this a reality in my life also. If there is any way you could share what did happen at the beginning of the year, I would be so grateful. I will be going through your blog and getting to know you. I have wanted my new blog to be more heartfelt than it is, and reading this has given me the courage to work towards that. Thank you and God Bless You.

  5. Come on down. Not many of us look like we did in high school. I like to think of myself as twice the woman I was then. In more ways than one.

  6. Wow...this sounds like I wrote it myself, Suzanne. First off, you look terrific in the photos. I have a thing about not wanting to put my own photo on my blog, I look very little like I did 30 years ago and as you say, those images stick in your mind.

    I recently connected with a friend from way back on FB. We have been emailing back and forth for a few months now. We actually picked up where we left off when she moved to New Mexico from here in Chicago. I so look forward to our Saturday night chats and I know someday we will probably meet up again. I finally straight out wrote to her... I look very little like I did. I used to be a skinny minny, those days are long over. I felt like I had to come clean. And she just brushed it off. I realized it was "Me" she missed and wanted to talk to and hopefully see in the future. What we look like hardly matters.

    So, your post was a real good one for me to read today. I really enjoyed it and it makes me feel good about myself for some reason. Thanks, Suzanne!


  7. You just wrote my story! I can't stand the way I look now.
    Loved reading this. Thanks for sharing.

  8. What a beautiful before, but especially after photo of the two of you! Honey, you still look the same and so does your friend! I can definitely relate to every word you've written here...I have a few more years under my belt, I'll be 63 this March, and I have to keep telling myself, I'm not 50 anymore! lol! Congratulations Suzanne, You are a beautiful woman...celebrate your wonderful life! Hugs, Loretta

  9. Suzanne I am so proud of you. It is so hard to overcome feelings like that. I have become much stronger and more sure of myself after turning 50. Something about it and only really having to make me happy and not try to make the world happy. Yep a born longer. Thanks for sharing this! hugs, Linda

  10. You are beautiful!!
    Life is short.
    Give yourself a big hug.
    This is a success story.
    Thank you for this post.

  11. Hello
    Good for you!!! Love the picture of you and your high school friend.
    I so admire you for being so upfront and honest and getting over the feeling you had. I have been hiding in my walls of my house...I only go to work and home and sometimes to the grocery store. I really do not want any one to see what I look like today but I only have myself to blame. I have about 25 pounds but it seems like a 100.
    Thank you for your post today, I really am going to try to gain back my self esteem and work at getting back to where I feel comfortable, I miss being out there
    Thank you!

  12. I'm so glad that your life brought you to a place where you can write this post. You are lucky to have such wonderful friends...and can enjoy them even more.

    When I turned 50...I really did begin to look at life and myself from a VERY different perspective...much better than before 50. I am going to be 60 this year! yikes! But, I am still learning...about life, about people and my relationship with IT all. My wish is that I never stop working towards being better today than I was yesterday. =)


  13. How wonderful for you and Mary! I'm proud of you for this turn around and finding and learning about yourself. Sometimes it's not easy, but you're doing it.

    Aren't HS girlfriends the best? I'm still in touch with one of mine too!

  14. i understand about the photos-i still haven't posted a current one of myself-nor do i have any recent ones...

    so great you got to see your friend again! your photos are great :)

  15. So glad you step out and saw you high school friend!! I think we all realize that we are getting older and the only one that is hard on us is ourselves!! Didn't realize we were as close in age- I was a very young 79 graduate- should really have graduated in 1980 like you!

    bee blessed

  16. What a wonderful post! Your visit with your friend reminded me of some words I saw on Pinterest this week - "True friendship isn't about being inseparable, it's being separated and nothing changes."

  17. I loved your post - sounds like it's a new you!!

    I just noticed - My birthday is also March 21.

  18. What a great post!!! And you look beautiful!!!! They say even super models struggle with their looks and we are hardest on ourselves!! You have no reason to be, glad youre having a great time!!!

  19. Looks like a great reunion!!
    It took me awhile, but I finally realized that people and friendships are a lot more important than anything else.

  20. Your post made me so happy for you. Hubby and I will go back to our 60th reunion in Sept. I only went to that school for my junior and senior year but hubby went with the same "kids" from kindergarden on. I have to take an annual along to see if I remember them. Time goes so fast and I doubt that there will be more reunions after this one, but if so, it is so important to make the effort to go. I would always get so upset as many of the "kids" that lived in our home town didn't go to the reunion, but those who traveled a long way did. We want to see everyone and remonise about old times. Thats what friends do, we all age, none of us look like we did in highschool, but we are still the same people. I wish I could find my best girl friend from my sophmore year but haven't been able to locate her yet. Hugs

  21. What a wonderful post...and your turning 50...I would of never thought you were even close to 50!! You look great!!

  22. How wonderful to be able to spend time with a friend after all these years. I lost touch will all my friends, except for one who still lives nearby.


  23. I just love breakthrough moments! I've had them myself and as I turn 50 this year too, it's time to put our best foot forward and stop being so hard on our self.
    It looks like such a fun day with your friend.

    I dropped by because we were both reviewing the Country Threads book. Have a lovely Sunday.

  24. life is short and even shorter when we imprison ourselves this way, I know what you speak of...many, many years and missed opportunities. I'm so glad you made your way out, it's time to start you life and to live it fully. You are beautifully blessed. Enjoy.

  25. Oh I loved reading this tonight. Nothing makes me happier when I see old friends connecting.......nothing is as important as that continuity in life.we all know that more and more as we get old...
    So happy for you both!
    Hugs, Nancy

  26. Yep, so many of us are the same way - hate to see the old faces because I am so afraid of the shock that will register in their eyes at my tremendous girth. First, we are never as large as what we think we are and second, when I finally attended a class reunion - those skinny girls have not aged as well; wrinkles, wrinkles. I recently met with two girls from high school that I had not seen since 1973. We were all very excited to plan an outing to a tea room in the middle of our state; about a four hour drive for all of us. About one week before the tea party - we all started to email tentative hints that we may not look like what we remember. Hey people - it has been almost 40 years!!! We better look different!!!! And I was SHOCKED when I saw your picture -you look marvelous :) - and about 35 years old :)

  27. Wow. You wrote this for me. I don't have any pictures of myself on my blog either, and I'll turn 50 in June.

    I'm so lucky to have you for an inspiration. Thanks for this post!

  28. Oh, Suzanne! This was one of the sweetest posts I have ever read. I can see the struggle you went through and it just touched my heart. For the life of me, I couldn't imagine why you wouldn't want your picture made...I am much more overweight than you, and I miss the "old me" terribly (and this year struggled with turning 60!) You look wonderful, believe me! I am so glad you had this amazing visit with your highschool friend. What a priceless treasure that was! Glad too that you felt you could bare your soul in this really are, as Threeundertwo just said, an inspiration.

  29. ok...first of all...this was a great post...I know I have been absent for a long while here, and I may not have room to talk...but are you crazy?????
    you are a beautiful woman!!! now...I am surprised that you are not a my minds eye I imagined you as short and blonde!!! hahaha
    you have such a pretty smile and you have nothing to be worried about at all!!!
    None of us are perfect...we all have struggles with should be confident...and strut your beautiful stuff!!!
    now on a more serious note...I totally relate to all the struggles you shared with us today...I feel them too...confidence is not something I have a lot of either...
    isn't it just wonderful that we can find such support in our online blogging friends?

  30. LOved reading this!! I went to my first HS reunion 3 years ago....the big 25! I had an absolute blast and was so glad I decided to go. Like you, I've caught up w/ old friends via FB and it's always as if time never passed. Every one of us has our stuff...things we don't like, wish we could change. I'm happy for you that you decided to meet your friend and go to this will have a blast!

  31. So very happy for you Suzanne! It is wonderful to meet up with an old friend and have such a grand time. I think you look lovely and maybe we can meet up one day...when you are ready.

  32. A great post Suzanne. I loved hearing about your meeting with your friend. I feel the same way you do. I don't think there ere many people who can't relate. Working on my confidence and breaking down walls too.


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