Several years ago I went back to college after taking some years off. To make it less stressful with the transition back, I took music classes. I was nervous but excited.
I made great progress in my music, but more than that, I formed deep friendships. Most of the people in the group were old enough to be my parents/grandparents and a few became like adoptive parents who I looked forward to seeing once a week. In addition to helping with my music, one always gave me a ride home and they helped me when my anxiety became overwhelming.
At the end of that semester we had a concert, only my second ever and I was really nervous. The hour seemed to pass slowly but one of my friends sat near me and kept reassuring me I had this! 🙂 At the end of the concert, we had afternoon tea. My lovely friend had learned that I was gluten free and put together two large gift bags full of safe treats for me!!!! That was beyond awesome and unexpected and so helpful.
That was a few years back and since then our friendship has strengthened! We often go out for lunch (at a safe restaurant) when she is in town and even though I don’t drive, she never makes me feel like a burden! Of course, music is usually involved but also now, we can have deeper conversations too. We don’t agree on all things but will let the other have her say. That means so much to me! There is quite an age difference, but we get along so well and she treats me more like an equal. 🙂