Geogia O’Keefe’s words may remind you of the importance of friendships and how for many in our fast paced lives sadly friendships are put on the back burner, making them not a high priority. Although unquestionably you do “care about” your friends, you simply have no time, no energy to give them.
Upon examination, the truth is most of who you call “friends” are in fact merely acquaintances. They may be those with whom you work or engage with at the gym or at social events. You like each other well enough, but there is no deep and sustained attachment. While it is good to have these loose connections helping you feel a part of a social network, casual relationships may not feed the soul, like only “a best friend” can do.
A description of a best-friend-relationship might include:
* Longevity...you knew each other, “back then”. You have important history together.
* You can say most anything to them, and they won’t be offended or defended. You can easily forgive each other for small infractions.
* There is total trust; you confide in each other and keep secrets.
* Even though you may have gone in very different directions, there remains that thread of continuity you both so cherish. You may not see each other all that often, but you know with a single phone call, you can pick up just where you left off.
* You can always reach out to them for help should you get in trouble, knowing they will be there for you.
You probably have heard this truism, “To have a friend, you have to be a friend.” This requires an acknowledgement and an appreciation of the deep and abiding bond between the two of you. Sometimes it is you who has to make the effort of reaching out, thereby maintaining a connection on some kind of regular basis, whether it is only monthly or on every birthday or holiday. You and your friend need to take the time for a long, shared conversation so you can catch up. A good talk like this is what may remind you of who you really are, seen through the mirror of your best friend.
As boomers and beyond, having lived all these decades, you probably have experienced the loss of some good friends. Maybe they, or you, moved away and you let the friendship go with the distance. Or you might have had a big disagreement or a crushing disappointment or a horrible betrayal, or there was a death. Sadness and heart break goes with this loss of a good, good friend. But as in all things, when we come to the end of a chapter, it is best to let go and go on.
You may take this opportunity to assess just how many best friends have you had in life, and if there is even just one, consider yourself blessed, knowing not everyone is so fortunate.