“A friend is someone who knows all about you and still loves you.”
~~ Elbert Hubbard
“Good friends, good books, and a sleepy conscience: this is the ideal life.”
~~ Mark Twain
Something weird has happened over the last few years. I used to have so many friends I didn’t even know what to do. My husband “R” and I had a Halloween party about five years ago and over two hundred people showed up. I had to keep a calendar to make sure I knew when I could do what with which person and which day. It was rare for more than a couple days to pass that I didn’t have someone calling and wanting to do something.
But since I have been spending almost all my free time writing, so I can quit my Evil Day Job, and have time to both write and hang out with friends…so many of them seemed to have…faded away.
Now I know I have to do my part in maintaining friendships. But whoa…. Come on. Almost no calls these days? Where are they? Where did they go?
I have found myself revaluating the word “friend.”
There was also the drama that my friends brought with them. Oh, my the drama! The friend with terrifying road rage every time he took us anywhere. The ones that were so political and always ranting and raving about some senator or judge or company or GMOs or whatever. The people that called “last time” and if I don’t call “this time” then they would get mad. The friends who were always having some boyfriend issue that was more important than the cure to cancer. The ones that could be easily offended and I would have to play guessing games to figure out what I did wrong and apologize. The friends that would get jealous that I had other friends and did things with them. And the negativity! The doom and gloom! Or how about the ones that only called when they wanted something? And I haven’t even begun to describe what I am talking about. I started to realize what I was putting up with in order to have friends.
But it isn’t even that I’ve been putting up with crap to have friends. What I was looking for was people to fill up every moment so I didn’t have to be alone. To be with myself. And I am not sure why. I think I’m a pretty good guy. Why wouldn’t I want to be with myself?
Now I am not being negative here. Not now at least.
Because I am finally starting to enjoy my own company. It certainly makes writing easier!
And because what has happened is that I have begun to see who my real friends are.
And two of the best are my friends Cricket and Linnea—and before the year is over they will get at least one post a piece.
During a tough week they were blazing shining moments. Last night I went out with Linnea to help her celebrate her birthday, wound up staying at her house for the night, and then had a wonderful brunch with her today. Then this evening it was lots of quality time with Cricket, laughing and eating her amazing Mexican meatloaf, and getting caught up on excellent television—like Zoo. And Whispers. Wow, are they entertaining shows.
And then there is Will. He is such a good friend he almost feels like a second spouse. Now I know he’s not…but he is so much more than a friend.
I won’t even start talking about the friends I have online…and my fellow writers. And readers!
I look at what I don’t like in life and put it on one side of the scale and I look at what I cherish in life—like my friends, real friends who are always there—and put them on the other side of the scale and—bang!—the good side outweighs the bad. So easily.
And when times are bad I will remember this. I will think about Cricket and Linnea and Will.
And I will smile.