Reconnecting With Old Friends, a Theme as Old as Time

This week something absolutely wonderful happened to me. An old friend who had been an essential and integral part of my life 52 years ago–yes, you read that right–found me because of my author Facebook page. We’d last spoken in the mid-seventies when I was snowed under with three small children, and she’d just had her first. We’d promised to stay in touch, but sadly life happened, and we went our separate ways.

In 1969, I started university in Ottawa, not knowing a soul, but two of the girls in my residence would become as close to me as my real sister, closer even, and when I married two years later, they walked down the aisle with me.

I’m the one sitting down, the flower girl is my niece, now in her fifties, the attendants, from left to right are Lee, Janet, and Michele. As of September 3, this year, fifty years will have passed since that picture was taken. It’s hard to believe that so much time could’ve gone by, but it has.

Michele is my sister, four years my junior, and while we may not have been close as children , we are closer now than ever. She is the rock I lean on when we visit our mother in the nursing home.

Janet, my roommate for two years became my bestie. We used to put a pile of LPs on the record player and go to sleep listening to the sounds of Gordon Lightfoot, The Beatles, The Hollies, and many others. Sadly, she’s no longer with us, having died from medical complications at an early age.

Lee is the one who found me, the one I’ve been able to reconnect with. She and her husband are well and have two daughters, one living only an hour away from us, so there is hope that, someday when the pandemic is put to rest, we will be able to get together and reminisce about old times–those good times when the future was before us, and we had wild, wonderful lives to live.

This song which came out that year always brings back memories of residence and listening to it being played over and over until the LP actually skipped.

1969 was also the year I met my soulmate, the man I’ve been with for 52 years, and if I could do it all again, I would.

I took many of the musical memories from that year to write my novel Same Time Next Year. While much of the book is fictional, the music and the references to how the good old days weren’t as good for women as some men like to believe are all true and fact checked. This is a reunion story, specifically dealing with young love, lost and then found.
For three short weeks, Twyla Lancaster was the fairy tale princess who’d found her prince, but just like that, reality ripped them apart. Now, fifty years later, she needs to know why the only man she ever loved broke his promises. As she writes her memoir and learns more about that summer, she realizes things were not what they seemed.
Hormones raced, promises were made, but Twyla left Michael Morrison high and dry, and within weeks, married someone else. Grieving the loss of his parents and her betrayal, he turned his back on love, focusing on his military career. Now, goaded by his sister, he agrees to attend a wedding and reunion, knowing Twyla will be there. It’s time to find out why she lied to him all those years ago.
The moment the star-crossed lovers see one another, love blooms between them, but when Michael discovers Twyla’s secret, he’s devastated. Is love enough to erase fifty years of pain and betrayal?

Same Time Next Year is available in the ABB’s Invincible Diversity Box set.

Reconnecting with Lee reminded me of how common the trope of old friends meeting again is. It’s one I’ve used myself many times. Sometimes the old friends were lovers, at other times they weren’t. In my book, The Blue Dragon, my hero and heroine met at university, but instead of marrying, they parted, their paths going in different directions.

True love never dies.
Gravely wounded in Afghanistan, Samantha Collins returns to Canada to discover a previously unknown relative has died and made her heir to the family estate. The bequest consists of a century-old farmhouse and an orange tabby. Alone, having given up on love, marriage, and children, facing a grim future, Sam opts to move into the house until she decides what to do with it. When she opens the door, she gets more than she bargained for. Nobody mentioned Great-aunt Esther was a hoarder.
Following his divorce, Phil Austin returns to South Creek. An architect who prefers restoring old buildings to designing new ones, he’s intrigued to learn one of the area’s century-old houses may be sold. Picturing the house converted to an inn, when Phil knocks on the door, he gets more than he expected. The new owner is the woman he loved and lost fifteen years ago.
Stunned to find the only man she ever loved on her doorstep, Sam is carried away by his ideas for the house. Torn between hope and despair, she agrees to his business proposal. As they renew their friendship and they sift through the trash and treasures Esther Cohen left behind, can they find the courage to open their hearts to one another again?

You can find The Blue Dragon in the ABB box set, Fortune’s Favor available for only 99 cents USD or free to read in KU.

There are many second chance at love novels out there where people are separated for different reasons. In my novel, Hello Again, it takes divine intervention, Sioux-style, to reunite her with the one she loves.

Based on a Sioux myth, this novel is a poignant reminder of the beauty and wonder of the circle of life. For Charley Winters, love means loss and pain. She’s spent the last five years struggling with her grief. Existing, not living. Drawn to Saskatchewan, she travels west take the job she’s always wanted. But life gets complicated when she’s rescued from a vicious tornado by her dead husband’s double, a man who makes her feel things she hasn’t in years. Add to that a native myth, a shaman, a green-eyed wolf, and her husband’s ghost … Can she lift a millennia old curse and find joy and love again?

Hello Again is available in the ABB’s newest box set, Unforgettable Lovers Unforgettable Promises available for pre-order now, to be released on April 2, 2021. I’m so proud to be part of yet another amazing set with so many wonderful New York Times and USA Today bestselling authors.

May the month of April bring you joy, health and sunny days!

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About Susanne Matthews

I'm a retired high school English teacher turned author. I'm Canadian. My husband and I have been married 48 years and have 3 children and 5 grandchildren, as well as 2 step-grandchildren.  I enjoy traveling, especially somewhere warm in winter.

2 Replies to “Reconnecting With Old Friends, a Theme as Old as Time”

  1. I love that about FB. People making new connections and reconnecting with those they’ve lost touch with. I’m so happy you had the chance to hear from an old friend (love your wedding photo!)

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