We all experience different kinds of bonding in our lives. In some cases the interactions pass by without us truly noticing something important took place. If you’ve ever witnessed a group of men around a television set on a Sunday afternoon, rooting for their favorite team, you know what I mean. At first all is quiet….gradually emotions begin to escalate from the performance on the field and before too long there are cheers, boos, bear- hugs, and high-fives. Once the game is over, in some cases friends are made for life. Each week at arenas and stadiums around the world fans rush to support their favorite team. It’s an interesting experience to watch twenty- thousand people cheering for the same team. I guess you could call this “extreme bonding!” (smile) but bonding it is!! As the crowds file out at the end of the game perspiration and relief shows on many of the faces. It’s easy to ask yourself, “How many people actually played in this game?” Hopefully fun was experienced by all.

I, being a female, love to “bond’ with my girlfriends over shopping and some coffee or a snack. There can never be enough stories or tidbits of advice. We are proud that we feel we keep the “homefires burning”, and we share this common bond. Many of us use food, sports events, or movies as a way to get together and “connect.” We may not say we love each other, but in a way, aren’t we?

Children form bonds with playdates, and participation on teams at school. It can be as simple as a person sitting next to you in class and one day a casual smile or word can form a friendship for life. We all visit the local supermarket, deli or coffeeshop. You walk through the door and standing around are a few people shooting the breeze for the casual ear to hear. It could be talk about the weather, politics, or front-page news….but before too long you too are drawn into the conversation. I usually leave these places with a smile on my face, grateful to know there are others who take the time to have a point of view.

We all go through life feeling we are so different, but through bonding we discover many of us have the same problems, and crave the same hopes and dreams. Although society, for better or worse, places us into groups, the awareness of our ability to bond can break down the walls that separate us. It may be a wink, a nod, a smile or a “hello,” but it says “I care” and “I too am a part of the human family.”

Take the time to love,

Jennifer Avalon
© 1999 Jennifer Avalon

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