Friendships truly are a fleeting thing. Some people have friends they’ve known since grade school… my sister-in-law is a prime example of that, I’ve always envied admired her friendship ties and strive to adopt her persona of establishing deep, meaningful friendships. I had a large circle of friends when I lived in Seattle – (I grew up there) and when I moved to Small Town America, I made the assumption that (new) friendships would be an easy thing to cultivate… but because it is Small Town America, there seems to be less opportunity to make solid friendships – as they already have their circle of friends from grade school, and are not so ‘open’ to adding anyone ‘new’ to their current circle of friends.
The mindset here seems to be almost ‘resentment’ towards people coming from a ‘big city’, possibly a bit of being by the perceived ‘big city’ thinking. My ‘solid’ friendships from out West were damaged by my move almost 3000 miles away. Mostly because I didn’t tell them (except for 3 or 4 very close friends) in advance I was moving, as I was ‘escaping’ from my abusive ex-husband. I kept them in the dark about my move, because they all really liked him (he always showed his absolute best side to them at all times), and I knew there would be conversations between them and him and wanted to stay safe. So I suppose in that case I sacrificed my friendships for my life. I’ve been away from those friends for 11 years, now, and while there are still the occasional email messages and a nice visit last year, the ‘closeness’ has unfortunately gone by the wayside.
‘Friendship’ tends to fall into a few different categories: 1) “Fair -Weather Friend”: A friend who supports others only when it is easy and convenient to do so. 2) “True Friend”: A friend who supports their own friends through emotional difficulties. This term also denotes a large degree of altruism, in that the ‘true friend’ often sacrifices something of his or her own (usually their time and resources) in order to help the friend in need. 3) “Best Friend”: A friend to whom one feels closest.
I consider myself lucky…sure, I’ve had my fair share of ‘Fair-Weather Friends’, unfortunately, but who hasn’t? But I have a wonderful person in my life I consider my ‘Best Friend’ – she’s the one that regardless of the vast miles that separate us, that I can count on no matter what.
Peggy, in Nevada, is one of those precious Best Friends…we were inseparable for more than 10 years until we both moved to different states. She’s been a welcome ‘constant’ in my life in spite of the distance in miles, and we rarely get the opportunity to speak on the phone (mostly because I am so not a ‘phone person’), so email is truly a blessing to keep our friendship flame alive. She’s much better than me at keeping in touch…sure, I make sure I don’t forget her birthday, we talk on birthdays and Christmas, but my dearest Peggy – I will make a concerted effort to keep the lines of communication open from my end more often, because you are important to me, and I truly appreciate you as a friend, and someone I would be very sad to not have in my life. Thank you for being you, and for being my Best Friend!
Friendships are fleeting – people grow, change, move, or situations in life simply change, which can change the dynamics of friendship. Life is short, so be sure to appreciate the friends currently in your life. Some friends will exit your life for no rhyme or reason…but True Friends and True Best Friends will be there always.