FRIENDSHIP. Is there a sweeter word in this whole wide world? The events of the past week or so have left me believing in the power of friendship. I am reminded of a little song we used to sing in Girl Scouts: Make new friends, but keep the old, one is silver and the other gold. I have truly begun to understand just how precious friends are as I get older. As life evolves, so do friendships.
Some friends made in childhood last into our later years, while many seem to fall away and are forgotten. The friends we acquire in our teenage years are an integral part of our growing and maturation process, while friends made in our adult years are appreciated with a wisdom and maturity that can only be earned by doing time on this planet Earth. Some friends are like a fragile flower - there when we need them most, but fading from view and our lives as that period of connection gradually morphs into something else. Some friends are like a sturdy oak tree - there for a lifetime to lend support and comfort, and steadfast in their devotion. Finally, some friends are like shooting stars - brilliant in their blaze of glory and blinding in their lifeforce, but just as rapidly burning out as your places in each others' lives seem to change abruptly, leaving you always with memories, and sometimes little else.
I have been so blessed to renew and refresh friendships this week, to enrich new (old) friendships ;) and to also be of service to a friend who needed my help and a kind word just yesterday. I am so fortunate that these people are in my life and consider me their friend. Some of my friends are old buddies from younger school days, and some are current or past co-workers. Some have absolutely nothing to do with either setting, but I am so fortunate to have them all. My wish this year and next is to be the kind of friend to them that they so deserve.
Who do you laugh with? Who knows your deepest, darkest secrets? Who can you count on to indulge your eccentricities and quirks? Sometimes, this can be one person. Or, sometimes, many different people play these roles. If you are blessed enough to have such friends in your life, I invite you to share your memories and gratitude here, and better yet, with that special friend.
The friend who needed a shoulder to lean on yesterday is one of my oldest and dearest friends of over 20 years. There is virtually nothing we wouldn't do for one another, and it is in this devotion that we know we can find comfort. The song "Bridge Over Troubled Water" by the talented duo of Simon and Garfunkel has consequently been on my mind all day long, which suits me fine, since I think it is one of the most beautiful songs ever made. What a tribute to the strength of friendship it is! Do you have a friend that would virtually lay down his or her life for you, and for whom you would do the same in return? For my friend, and for yours, I include this powerful song so that we are reminded of just how rich our lives are because of friends like these.
For all of our friends that know everything about us, that we consider our "best friends" above all others, I give you this wonderful tune by Queen, "You're My Best Friend". I myself have been lucky enough to have many friends throughout the years, some come and some go. But there will always be just one "best friend". She knows more about me than I know about myself, I do believe, and the times we have had are legendary (or, well, maybe we are just legends in our own mind!) I'll bet you have a friend like that, one that you wouldn't trade for all the
Finally, there are those friends that are just completely comfortable, like an old shoe, but in a good way. They are without guile or agenda, and around when you need them, but never in your hair or on your nerves.....they are the ones that "winter, spring, summer or fall, all you got to do is call", and they'll be there, because "You've Got a Friend". This is the spirit behind Carole King's uplifting song, a tribute to all the people in a person's life that make the world go round (and round, and round). What would we do without our circle of friends, some silver, some gold, but all links in the chain of our lives that makes us richer? I am indeed a wealthy woman....how about you?
And, just because I miss Freddie, and some dear friends who lost their battle with AIDS, to this day, I will close with this:
Because I look, and I find, I still love you.