Mark Twain

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do ...
Explore. Dream. Discover." Mark Twain

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Friendship

The most beautiful discovery true friends make
is that they can grow separately without growing apart.
~ Elisabeth Foley


What a true statement.

I do believe that friendship is a convoluted subject, one that isn't easily discussed without using generalities or platitudes. My life has been filled with many friendships, but I wanted to give a nod to the special kind of friendship that doesn't fit the typical friendship mold.

The seldom seen or talked to friend!
The friend you are instantly at ease with
even if it has been 10 years since you last talked.

As a child or young person friends seem to be an important influence and fluid part of our lives. As a child, friends can be casually made in a moment. Ask a child who has just spent time playing in the sandbox with a new acquaintance ... who is this person they are spending time with and they usually say without hesitation "my friend". Teens place a great importance on the opinions of their "friends" - peer pressure is all about friends and what they think and how you fit in.

But as you mature you realize that not everyone who crosses your path in life is a friend. By mid life many established friendships are tested by distance, time or hardship. Sometimes those tested friendships disappear. Later in life some long term friendships can almost reach the level of family ties.

I am blessed with the ability to make friends easily. I count a diverse group of people among my friends. As the quote above reflects, friendship should be able to stand the test of individual growth and change. Friends who are cookie cutter images of me are not as satisfying as those hold a different perspective.

The most surprising friendships for me are the ones that are not nurtured. You hear all the time ... friendships, relationships, marriages ... they need caring and tending to be successful. And yet, I personally have a hand full of friends who I rarely see or communicate with, and when we get together it is like no time has passed, no changes in who we are have occurred.

Yet, change has occurred. Life changes you. But the basic underlying relationship is unchanged. The comfort in each other's company remains.

Why is that!

Can it be said that friendship is more of a chemistry thing?
You either have a good chemistry with a person or you don't.

Or is the art of building friendships more an individual thing?
Are some individuals more open to the differences of others
and that is what makes the friendship work between 2 divergent people?

I can think of at least 5 individuals who fit this category of "distant friend"
- no matter when they bump into my life,
we are in sync.

Do you have friends like that?







5 comments:

  1. I understand what you mean by 'distant friend' but that term has a different meaning for me, more like someone who is frequent acquaintance but not someone I truly know well. In that case, it would be someone with whom I never really hit if off with, and we've both kept our polite 'distance'.

    To answer you question, yes, I do have friends like that. One lives 14 hours away and we don't talk often but when we do, you'd think we had just been together two days ago. Another is the same city but we don't see each other often due to different life styles and schedules. No gap there, and with a life long history (since kindergarten!), one word can often be enough to evoke a memory. :)

    Don't you love discovering a kinship with a blogger? A post will interest me and I'll leave a comment, hopefully showing a bit of who I am without bombarding the unsuspected blogger with ALL that I am. ;-)

    When the chemistry is right, two bloggers will feel it through the written word almost as quickly as two people meeting face to face for the first time and recognizing something of themselves in each other.

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  2. Knitty,

    What a wonderful comment. Your observations are so very true. I think it is the relationship building among some of my readers that has been the thread that keeps me coming back.

    It certainly is an element of satisfaction ... in this blogging experience.

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this.

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  3. I have a couple friends like that - and I love them to death.

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  4. i do have friends like that and no matter what is happening in either of our lives, we are there for one another. it's the best kind of friendship-one where each person is loved unconditionally and opinions valued immensely. :)

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  5. Yes, actually I have quite a few friends like that. With Ken being in the military we have people who were as close a family when we were over seas. If we run into any of these people we connect instantly again.
    I also have friends from childhood and its the same way with them.
    I also have friends who are very different from each other.

    If I ever win the lottery I'd like to invite all my friends to meet at a hotel somewhere where they could all meet and we would have one great party! Of course I'd pay for everything with my winnings.

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