They can amaze you.
They can surprise you.
They can support you.
And they can sometimes even let you down.
One thing I have learned since my first friendship as a child is that friendships evolve as you mature- even the new ones you make as you go into your 30’s. Friendships also vary depending on what you have in common with the person, be it an illness, hobby or other person. Some friendships also vary widely by age. Often my friends are much older than I am but I have always liked that about my friends. Most times, not always, there is more maturity, more respect and more satisfaction with who they are and who others they know are- this is why I think I choose older friends. I think older people overall have a more stable attitude and outlook on life and are more calm. Now a lot of people my age (early thirties) aren’t ready to be around such calm friends but at this point in my life that is what I require. Being chronically ill I cannot be like other “normal” women. (I hate that term because I don’t believe in normalcy anyway but for the sake of argument and discussion we will use it here) I require in my friendships peace, support and love. Just like I expect the other person to receive these from me as well. Friendship to me is all about give and take- HUGE with me is give and take. Sometimes obviously one person gives more than takes and vice versa but that’s where the support and love comes in when someone is struggling. It’s true we want someone who is confident at least partially with themselves and has an optimistic outlook because if they didn’t, how would we ever make it out of our black holes? There has to be some sort of balance because not everyone is always happy nor is everyone always perfect. We are all human after all and have emotion. We must be there for one another. Compassion, sympathy, empathy and love. I have felt abandoned by friends in the recent past, turns out I was pretty wrong, but still it hurt and I managed to torture myself in my head about it when all I needed was a little extra confidence and love at the time. My advice if you are in those situations is to just be honest with your friends. What would it have hurt for me to be honest with them? Nothing.
I value my friendships highly. They mean as much as family to me. Sad? Maybe, but my heart tells me it’s not.
The most I can do for my friend is simply be his friend.
~Henry David Thoreau
The only way to have a friend is to be one.
~Ralph Waldo Emerson