Catherine, from the moment I began to read your story, it felt very familiar to me. My mother also liked to make new friends and picked up a few every time she walked on the beach in Malibu or along the park on Ocean Avenue in Santa Monica. She used to say everyone was “so interesting,” and I used to be embarrassed by her. The older I get (I’m now in my 60s), I realize that I am doing the same as my mother, and yes, I embarrass my daughter, too.
And when you wrote about your relationship with your daughter, that felt familiar, as well. My younger daughter (twenty-six) and I finish each other’s sentences and have sleepovers still where we talk and laugh in bed together. I cherish our time together every week and know that it will not last forever — a similar feeling as when she left for college. She also has been fighting against me, as most children do, but I find it so interesting how she wants me to know that she is beginning to appreciate my advice and has even enjoyed taking it. She tells me that each year she accepts one more lesson that I have offered.
I now see another reason why I felt connected to your story. When I first joined Medium, “On Friendship, Reading and Connecting” was one of the first pieces I read and enjoyed.