I got to spend a few hours last night with Allison, a person I hired back in '97 when I was doing the government cable TV thing. She's actually a half-year or so older than me, but got behind in finishing school and jumping into career life. She was very interested in film and television and such, so her lack of experience wasn't really a deterrent.
Obviously you become close friends with someone you see everyday in a department of two, and it was always hard to set the right boundaries to maintain a manager-employee relationship. She was at my first wedding, parties, social functions and we both coached at the high school.
When I changed jobs, we barely saw each other. She eventually moved down to OU with her then-boyfriend. I missed going to her wedding because I was on a vacation or work trip or something. Life ultimately led her to Las Vegas and babies and a complete change. It had been eight years since we'd last seen each other.
As is often the case, it's Facebook that eventually got us reconnected, and we tried but failed to meet up last year. This year she drove in after her soccer practices and we had dinner. Telling each other our stories of the last few years just amplified how drastic the changes have been. We have completely different lives now, and it's just so hard to get your head around it.
We only got to spend about four hours hanging out, and half of that was the Blue Man show, but the meeting made me feel intensely happy and sad at the same time. Happy because I miss the way we'd have our "off sites" at BW-3 and bullshit about our lives, but sad because I feel like I've lost so much in terms of the friendships of that era of my life. Sure, there are entirely different relationships and situations in my life now, most measurably better, but I wish I could have both.
It was really hard to see her go, but her daughter is only a couple of weeks old and obviously needs her mommy. It was good to see her. The one thing that hasn't changed in my life is where I live, and that I think is the last change I feel I have to make.