What is friendship?
Words like compassion, companionship, understanding, safety, support come immediately to my mind. Everyone will have a different definition and not every friend will fulfill every quality at every step of the way. Some of our friends may never do any of these things for us, yet we still call them friends. Maybe because we embody one of these qualities, or something else that friend needs, for them. After all, there are givers and takers in every relationship, a balance to be maintained.
There is also a difference between a friend, and a good friend. I would rather have one good friend than a cluster of “ordinary” friends.
Here is why:
- A good friend is devoted, accessible, and always has your heart in her thoughts, through the triumphs and the challenges.
- A good friend is dependable. He is the one you can call, text, or email any time and know that he will come through for you, whether you are just checking in or are having a crisis.
- A good friend will find a way to at least be there by your side, cheering you on or making sense of the chaos.
- A good friend is timeless. You can pick up where you left off, whether after 3 days or 3 months, and it always feels like coming home.
- A good friend can make you laugh when all you want to do is cry; a good friend can also make you cry so that after the tears subside you can see the light.
I came across a quote that I think encompasses it all perfectly:
“Friendship is the comfort, the inexpressible comfort, of feeling safe with a person, having neither to weigh thoughts nor measure words, but pouring all out just as they are, chaff and grain together, certain that a faithful, friendly hand will take and sift them, keep what is worth keeping and, with a breath of comfort, blow the rest away.” ~ A Life for a Life by Dinah Mulock Craik, 1859 found athttp://www.xenodochy.org/ex/quotes/friendship.html.
I am blessed to have several good friends who have lifted me up through many struggles and cheered me through many victories. I can only aspire to be as good of a friend to them, to hold their hands, in any way they need.
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