Real Friendship

20 02 2013

I’ve been chewing out another blog post, so there will probably be one online in the next few days, but this topic really got me stirring. 

What makes a real, true friend?

I don’t know if I am a true friend or not all the time, but I’m trying.  A lot of my life lately has been about discovering and discussing what this means.  Here’s what I think.

You don’t always love your friends.  You really don’t.  Sometimes, they’re really honest and their honesty is hurtful.  But they don’t hurt you to be malicious, they hurt you to help prune you (to speak botanist for a second), and make you a better plant.  They’re truthful, they ask honest questions that require you to think about your answers.  Sometimes, those questions lead you on a journey in which you discover, for yourself, that you are innately wrong.  Sometimes, they re-solidify what you’re doing.  But never, do they ever stop encouraging you to become the you that deeply resides within you.  It’s like they have this awesome vision of the amazing person you’re going to be, and they’re there to help you discover that, no matter how rough and long the journey makes out to be.

Which brings me to my second point about friends, they’re there for you.  They don’t just run and check out just because it gets rough or you’re honest with you.  They appreciate the gift that is you in all circumstances, even when you’re hurtful, and they never abandon you.  This is a lesson I’ve had a hard time learning as the years go by.  It has been quite easy in times past to just neglect people when they just crap out on you.  But I’ve discovered that the best friends are the ones you choose to stay with time and time again.  They’re steady and constant, they don’t run, they don’t go away, and they’re always there for you.

While they may realize the potential of who you are and who you can be, they like you enough for right now.  They see all that potential, but those glimpses, and the moments that won’t be changed, they’re enough for right now.  They enjoy the moment.  See, with you, they’ve decided that the journey is worth it.  The journey, no matter where it takes you, is good enough, it’s not all about the destination. 

Friends accept you, without question.  If you’re a true friend, no matter what they throw at you, they accept it immediately, because they’re your friend.  It’s more important for them to be there for you, regardless of what they think.  But if it comes to right and wrong, regardless of the choice you make, they’re always going to be there for you, and you know their love for you does not hang on whether you make the right decision or not. 

Friends are often our very first lovers beyond our family.  They’re often the first people we truly love that we don’t HAVE to love.  Whether we acknowledge it or not, our friendships are the first people that we love because we want to.  And that love is constant.  It’s something that’s quite different from a familial love, although friends become family.  They’re never quite family, but they’re family we choose.  The love that we have for friends is never quite like the love we experience with our significant other, but these friendships are often more valuable than we realize.  We love our friends deeply.

Love doesn’t always equal agreement, but because of that love, it always equals support.  They’ve got your back regardless, even when they don’t agree with you.  Sometimes, it’s those who disagree with us the most that resonate the most truthful and honest.  Because they’re, again, holding us to be the best us that we can be.  We don’t like them at the moment, but we know they’re there for us regardless, and we don’t have to question them or their presence in our life. 

Friends add to our life good stuff, and they don’t subtract from our life by bringing in a lot of trash or junk.  They don’t intentionally try to pollute your life or hurt you, but that sometimes happens.  But for the most part, we always know that we’re better off for living in this life and living our lives with them.  We sing songs off-key, misquote books and movies, gag over the latest hot star, but we experience them, because there are no barriers.

I guess that’s my real quota of friendship, the removal of barriers.  When you remove barriers, you are honest, and it doesn’t matter to you what they would or should think of you, you just know they always love you and hold you to that high standard.  You can be completely honest, and know that you’re not judged or held to this impossible standard.  They listen to you, even if they’re deaf, that’s a good friend.  But the point is, they’ll listen to you, even when you’re stupid or hormonal.  They’ll listen to you because they’re devoted to you and they won’t run away just because you are being more of a girl or a douche one day. 

I, in no way, show these qualities everyday and in every situation.  I am not the perfect friend.  But I am trying.  Trying makes up for a lot of wrongs in the process, I think.

These are just a few words.  What do you think real friendship consists of, that I haven’t mentioned?