December 16 Friendship How has a friend changed you or your perspective on the world this year? Was this change gradual, or a sudden burst?

This prompt cracks open the heart of vulnerability.

Friendships have, and continue, to be an interesting component in my life.  This goes all the way back to my early childhood when I had just one friend that I considered my best friend in the world.  So much so that I rarely interacted with others in a desperate attempt to ensure that I was somehow faithful to just her.  When we had a spat, I was lost.  When she moved away in 7th grade I was even more lost.

That sense of being lost when it comes to friendships continues as an adult.  I have ‘friends’, but to say that I have that best-friend relationship that I entails daily chats, shopping trips, shared meals, pedicures together…or whatever else adult women do in each others company, just isn’t true for me.

This fall as I watched someone I did consider a friend to lose her battle with cancer, I stood back silently amazed at the level of commitment her friends had for her in her final days. On a hike soon after she had passed, I stood amongst the trees and asked myself if I had, or will ever have, that type of relationship and if not, what is keeping me from attracting or accepting that into my life?  Seeing the commitment from her friends opened my eyes to the possibility of deep friendship.

The closest thing I have had to a best friend since the days of elementary school is a friendship that began as colleagues and has blossomed into a beautiful sisterhood that has endured time, distance and an out-of-state move.  She is the one that gets the texts in need of humor or support.  She is my first email with big news.  We have embedded memories of years past that continue to bring joy to me.

So while I am not a woman who has lots of girlfriends and my introvertness allows me to seek solitude more often than not, I can deeply appreciate the friendships of past and of present.

Perhaps it is my own acceptance that the friendships in my life are each meaningful in their own way and that taking care of my need for solitude can never diminish the beauty in those friendships.


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