I made reservations a couple of weeks ago at the Cheesecake Factory for lunch today with my co-worker friends. We have all worked closely with each other at some point over the past 5 years or so. Inevitably some of us are now based out of our homes, some have moved on to other companies and some have stayed office based. It is a rare treat for us to meet up. The sad truth. The happy truth? We were overwhelmed by the opportunity to see each other again. We had so much news to share, so many almost in tears laughs and so many fond memories. Life is dynamic, but that doesn’t mean you have to give up on what matters. It took about 10 minutes to set up the lunch and to have everyone respond. 10 minutes for 2 hours of absolute joy. We departed lunch with the biggest smiles.
This is where my story telling takes a reflective turn. The Cheesecake Factory is located at a mall. A place I have been trying to avoid this year for many reasons. I did a bit of shopping after lunch as I promised my dear husband some dress shirts and my joyful mood quickly drained and smile disappeared when I saw the faces of other shoppers. No one looked happy and it seemed that everyone was just going through the motions of holiday shopping expectations. I guess the point I am trying to convey here is surround yourself with the people in your life who bring you the most joy and spend lots and lots of time with them. It’s the best gift out there. I know it.