Meant to Mentor

“People are like chains, the closer they are, the stronger they become.”  – Federico Chini, The Sea Of Forgotten Memories

It’s hard to believe, but I realized this week that I’ve now known one of my dearest friends for a full decade. We met in an entirely different stage of life- ten years ago, we were both homeschooling our children, and we got together frequently on their behalf. (If you choose to homeschool young children, the bylaws do require this, because the number one, wide-eyed query you must always be prepared to answer is “But how will you socialize the children?”)

It’s a little bittersweet, but I find that I’m really enjoying the fact that we’ve now moved into a phase that allows us to connect just for us. Oh, sure, sometimes we’ll invite the kids along to hang out if they’d like, but many (most) times now, we don’t. They’re high school and college age, and they can do that for themselves.

Last week, during one of these visits, we were talking about the concept of mentoring, and I mentioned I’d done some reading on the topic and recalled some imagery about holding hands across generations. “The premise”, I assured her, “was really neat. Something about having two hands, one to reach forward to the generations ahead of you, and one to reach back to those coming behind. I’ll find the quote and send it to you.”

Well, I’m a liar. I’ve now been scouring the internet for a week, looking for mention of this concept… and can find no trace of it. I’ve discovered suggestions of the idea in a few different places, but I am beginning to suspect that I’ve absorbed several things and then created a mashup of the concepts in my own head. It does sound like something I’d do.

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