On Facebook, I posted a picture of three “older” ladies with umbrellas kicking up their heels. One even has a small, black and white dog on a leash. That could be us before the passing of my sweet Emma.
I posted the picture because I liked it. The ladies appear happy and they seem to be sharing a happy moment together. It’s the goal. So let’s go beyond the Facebook “Friends” we make with a click and take a moment to honor the true friends we love.
With the changes in my life, (retirement, moving) my good (and old) friends are a bit geographically rearranged. This means I have to travel to see my out of town friends and make the effort to connect with my local friends.
The caption on the picture is “It takes a long time to grow an old friend. Make sure to treasure them”. Well, maybe enough said, but when I break it down, I interpret “old friend” as “good friend”. In the last few years, I have made some “new friends” that are just as close as the “old friends”. So maybe it does not take a long time to grow old friends.
I think I would rewrite this phase as follows: “It takes time to grow good friends. Make sure to treasure them”.
I would also add: “it takes time to grow one’s self as a person, as friend.”
Through-out one’s life, it is the basic human condition to connect with other humans. Many of these connections we are lucky to consider to be our friends.
When we are grade school age, we tend to make friends with the neighbor kids or the one sitting next to you in the third grade. These are the basis for many life long connections. But as your personal life evolves, you become involved in special interests, a sport or a relationship and these original friends may drift away or settle in the background, ready to catch up through out your life’s journey. These are “good friends” and “old friends”, the older we get!
Once out in the real world, we attract a new set of friends; work colleagues, someone living near you and friends with similar interests and life style.
The mystery of the “love connection” as filled volumes of books, discussed over countless adult beverages and still we often don’t understand our own attractions. I think the friendship connection is just as complex. In addition to “old friends”, and “good friends” I would like to introduce the concept of an “intimate friend”. This is a rare individual that can grace our lives with great value. I am blessed with friends that I treasure, “old”, “good” and/or “intimate”, they are a big part of life’s journey.
Just one more type of friend I would like to mention. The “effortless” friend. The one you go weeks, months and maybe years without seeing but when you get together, well it’s just like old times, or is it? The time you spend with friends, the ideas you share and the resulting tears and laughter enhances our lives. I think the bottom line here is for us all to be a “old”, “good” friend to those we share our life with.
To you my friends, I love you all!