Friends 2.0: How many of us have them?

Friends. How many of us have them? Friends. The ones we can depend on?” ~ Whodini (1984)

These lyrics have been stuck in my head for days. I think it’s time to mull them over, so that I can let them go.

Friends. How many of us have them?

I hope we all have two good friends. Three if you can handle that many. I have three longtime good friends, maybe even four. I don’t care to work with more than that. I guess the first question is: what’s a friend?

A friend is someone that you genuinely connect with who is just as sincere in their connection to you. Reciprocity. Love, laughter, encouragement, and support are freely given and exchanged. It’s not about how often you talk. It’s about the fact that when you do it feels like no time has passed in-between you. Friends.

It’s also important to know what a friend is not. Hurt, humiliation, and ambiguity are not the makings of a true friendship. There are people who only look out for their own gain. I know a simple way to spot them: listen to the self-praising words that come out of their mouths.

You are not special. If they demean others, they will demean you too!

Friends. The ones we can depend on.

I’ve seen friends stick together through deaths and illnesses. I’ve seen friends hold each other up after job losses. Friends are dependable.

I know my very Bestest friend (Shon is her name and traveling is her game! Cheap plug👉🏽 check her out on Instagram @shesmilesatsunrise). We have been best friends for about 29 years. She’s been with me through relationships with my other best friends (that’s why she’s the Bestest👸🏽 ). She’s always super busy, so she never gets made at me crazy schedule. I don’t even get to see her once a year. Earlier this year when Hubby has knee surgery, she flew out here a week later so help me strengthen up for his care. She booked us a room at the Ritz Carlton, ordered us massages and facials, and got me tipsy at the bar. We danced. We laughed. We cried. We slept. She took time to give me the time when I needed it the most. She’s my G.O.A.T.!

This does not mean that your friends are your beck and call girls! That what’s going on with you is more important than their own journey. They have lives too. Their lives are also filled with happiness and sadness. They need encouraging words as well. Friends should always have room to be engaged in their own world guilt-free. If you guilt trip your friend, because her new romance has kept her away from happy hour then YOU, my dear, are not a good friend. 🤷🏽‍♀️

Friends. Before we go any further.

Friendships with the opposite sex are equally important. No one can convince me that males and females can’t be friends. That’s ludacris (not the rapper; the immaturity). The opposite sex can bring perspectives to your dialogues that would otherwise be missing. The male/female approach to problem solving is not typically the same. Both sides are valuable. These aren’t mandatory, but they are beneficial.

One of my friends is a guy. We’ve been friends for about 27 years. We’ve counseled each other through four marriages, three divorces, four kids, three abortions, four career changes, and three college degrees. That’s a lot of information shared 🤦🏽‍♀️ but the great part is when one of us calls the other, we don’t need the whole back story about why the other one feels certain ways about certain things. We get it.

The foundation of friendship is authenticity. You have got to be able to be your whole self with the other person without fear of shame or disapproval. This does not mean your friends are obligated to agree with you, but that they can disagree and love you at the same time.

“Show me your friends and I can tell you all about yourself” ~Pastor Chris

I do find Pastor’s saying to be true. The company we keep is a reflection of who we are. Yes, there are differences between us and our friends; however, our core values tend to be quite similar. The more you walk with them and talk with them, the more you start to sound alike. Your ideas become commingled. This is why it’s so important to choose friends wisely.

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