River of Stones: Day 6
Fellowship, a sense of belonging found with another, whom you feel connected, compatible and complimentary.
Refuge, a space of empathy, to feel safe, secure, protected; a place to commiserate, regroup, restore and nourish- safe from the slings and arrows.
Individuality, a space in which one can differentiate, define and develop a true independent sense of self
Encouragement to explore this life, define our goals, dream the big dreams, hope for something
Necessary, a person who adds to one’s existence and without whom an absence is felt.
Distinct and different than sibling or lover, a friend is a devotion of the heart that expects nothing in return but gives freely and easily.
When a child, friendships are made spontaneously, without regard for anything other than the simplest of desires: play with me. Pretend with me. Let’s color. I like your doll. Want to see my scab? Look what I can do! Poof! A friendship is made, the seeds sown for something far more significant. And while friends do cruel things to one another (or maybe only I did cruel things)…like pull hair, steal toys or throw scissors (rounded, kindergarten scissors)…for the most part, friends were the companions for the stretch of childhood not filled by sibling or parent. Home base. Ohly Ohly In Come Free. Where a siblings jockey for parental attention, jockeying for familial position and status, a friend eclipses that universe unscathed. Friends aren’t looking for anything. Nor do they expect anything.
As we age, friendships change. Some break. Some fade. They are seemingly harder to create without the playground substrate. We have comrades in arms. We have co-workers or employees or employers or paid consultants with whom we spend time. These are not places to create friendships. Not easily. They are friendship-like because the environment is intimate and familiar. Making a true and genuine friend in the adult world is complicated. We have lost much of the natural curiosity. It is harder to say, “Want to see my mastectomy scar? Look at my new car! Want some of my cake?” We have learned suspicion and are more guarded and reticent as adults. There is more competition. And the number of new friendships we make diminishes.