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Appreciating Friendships
Senior Corner 10-05-22

They say that friends improve the quality of life especially as you age. The easiest way to stay social is to maintain the friendships you currently have. Now that I am nearing 70, I realize how important that philosophy is. Time has a way of reminding us that we are not in this life alone and we need each other. We have all met those people who are special in our lives. I have a friend who I shop and camp with that I met in kindergarten. While in high school, we had a group of girls that would ride with us into Modesto hoping to meet cute boys. Oh boy, those were the days. It was definitely a more innocent time then. We don’t have the energy to look for cute guys anymore or want to but we have had a lot of fun times together.

Another childhood friend that I met when I was 12 has been by my side through thick and thin (literally). We know everything about each other and are there for each other in a heartbeat. I was a shy 12-year-old and she was outspoken and gutsy when we met. What a combination, but our friendship has endured for over 50 years. About 10 years ago, I became friends with someone who I call my music soulmate. We dance with our husbands until we can’t dance anymore. When the music stops, they almost need to hose us off because we are so hot. She is a friend that I can confide in knowing that the conversation will end with her. We talk at three in the morning about dumb things that we do and laugh until it hurts. Not forgotten are those friends that I don’t see as often but when I do everything is the same and we can talk and laugh about anything.

In the past few years, my friendships have expanded to a group of ladies that I volunteer with. Together, we are the creators and planners of the Escalon Senior Fun bunch. We have a common interest in providing a place for seniors to fight loneliness and boredom by joining in our senior social events. The friendships that I have made with these four ladies are purely out of respect and admiration because they care and continually demonstrate it. We all get a great deal of satisfaction from what we are doing. And we are always reminded of how lucky we are that this opportunity came into our lives. A friendship reward that we have all received from this endeavor are our group’s senior members that we have come to know. Our members vary in age from the 60s to over 100. What a gift to now be able to call them friends as they constantly show their tenacity and strength in continuing to find joy and purpose in their lives as they age.

The holiday season is upon us which is a great time to rekindle lost friendships and let our current friends know how much we appreciate them!


Tina Jensen is a member and one of the coordinators of activities for the Escalon Senior Fun Bunch. She contributes a monthly column for The Times.