We all want to have friends and be loved. We have the family we are born into to begin with. At a very early age we are introduced to the concept of friendship. From the first play date,we begin to evolve our personalities through the bonds of friendship.
In infancy,we start to learn the rules of friendship. We don’t keep friends if we don’t play nice. We start sharing toys, learning the art of compromise, discovering broader boundaries.
We get our heart broken when a friend doesn’t invite us to a party perhaps,or decides she isn’t friends anymore. These play dates don’t seem like learning,however we are building foundations upon which our future friendships are based.
We learn that friendships are not always reciprocal. Throughout life we meet people with whom we have perhaps common interests,even so,that does not automatically make them friends. So what is it that changes a person from an acquaintance to a true friend?
It begins, one would think by liking something about that person. Sometimes I find the very beginning of some friendships (i’ll call it the rootlet stage) begin because they actually remind you in part, of someone else you already like or love.This may or may not be the case.
Friendship, is actually by mutual invitation. You might really like someone very much,unless that person invites you in, you can do all the contortionist moves you like and it won’t get you anywhere.
There are the oscar worthy actors and actresses among us,magicians really,that somehow transform into something we are drawn to. If what they are presenting is an illusion, it will evaporate over time, leaving a person tricked, and knocked back. This rarely ends in the happily ever after scenario.
When at the rootlet stage, friendships can almost go unnoticed. The threads that unite you in friendship are still being woven into the tapestry each friendship creates.
There are of course friends for all occasions. Work associates, class mates. Even friends of other friends. Then there is the magic of the no questions asked ,best friend. Life enriching,heart entering through thick and thin friendships. The safe haven in the stormy sea of life.
There is risk with friendships that is rarely considered. It does leave you somewhat vulnerable as you let down the mask. The rewards however can be spectacular. Like fireworks on the 4th of July.
In the world we live in and share with billions of other people,the odds of finding true friendship seem bigger than winning the lottery, yet we jump in and risk everything to find it. Most of us our lucky to find one or two people along the way as we walk through life.
We might risk friendships with people,only to discover that they are depleting rather than enriching in nature. Many stay,hoping that what we saw in the person, way back at the beginning,is still there, and can somehow ,like a super hero,save the day. While others quite quickly hit the eject button right them off and move on to pastures new.
So friendships are somewhat of an elaborate dance. The movement of give and take. A fluidity that is not easily put into words.
Are all relationships equal? Why of coarse not. It is more like a trusted bank account. You make regular deposits and watch the dividends add up. Withdrawing more than what is there spells an abrupt end. Friendships are not, in my opinion a 50-50 arrangement. You have to be willing to give 100% at a moments notice and dig into your reserves when the need arises.
This isn’t a tennis game,attempting to score points. Giving back,only when the ball is volleyed over the net. True friendship although a lot of fun is not a game. If you are in,don’t just get your toes wet and make someone else do all the work.
It is so true that you get what you give. Give fully,accept people as they are ,not how you want to change them into becomming.
There are of coarse bad choices in friends and those that imagine friendships where none exist, that however will be a subject for a future post.
Do not force friendships they can be fragile and break. Nurture them though and they become pillars of strength.