I ran into an old friend from college today while waiting on the train platform and I realized it had been almost eight years since I had seen him. We chatted about his new baby girl born in October, how they like the neighborhood since they moved here late last summer, our favorite coffee shops in the area and how we’ve been in the neighborhood since 2007. He was shocked to learn that Chloe was our second and that we’ve been in our house for almost five years. It became obvious, quickly, that time was rushing by and we had been out of touch for a while.
What I noticed even more than the lack of familiarity were the small lines forming around his eyes, the specks of gray touching his temples. The beginning signs of aging, growing older, most likely wiser. Coming away from our brief encounter I was surprised to find myself confused…wasn’t he just 22? Wasn’t I? When did we stop talking about last weekend’s adventures in the urban jungle and start talking about which restaurants allowed strollers? About how family-friendly our neighborhood is and how that coffee place has really great crepes? About how much we love our little girls?
Somewhere I have a picture of him and me, with a couple other friends, holding paint brushes and laughing because we had just painted their room in the fraternity house. I can see the photo in my mind’s eye and we look so…childish. Now we’re grown up, mostly, and it took me by surprise. I’m sure he noticed the lines around my eyes and the weariness that comes from sleepless nights holding the baby. I wonder if he thought the same thing…when did we get so old?