I felt like talking about friendship today.
The connection we form with others that are outside of our blood families, the ones we chose to help us on our life journey.
It’s always fascinated me why we are friends with some people and not others. Out of all the people in the wide world, why we cross paths with this person and not that. Is it just a random selection of people who meet and become friends through chance and common interests, or is there something bigger at play? These are the types of questions I ponder on all the time in my daydreams. I like to think that nothing is to chance and everything has a reason. But I am aware others may not think so.
Anyhow, because this is my blog and I can pretty much have the freedom to write about what I personally believe, today I’m going to write about the qualities I look for in a friend and also the qualities I offer from myself as a friend. I suppose you could say that what I offer is what I like to receive. But I also have found myself being lined up with people that are quite opposite to me. When there are obvious opposites, I think those people are showing me parts of myself that are hidden and need to be seen. Or they are somehow forming a bit of balance and wholeness in my life where I might have been one way inclined.
Before I emigrated at the age of 32, I had mostly the same friends. I am still fiercely loyal to my oldest and best est friends in the UK. My oldest I met at just 6 weeks and 3 years of age. Then there were my infant school friends, a lot of whom I am still close with. And my work friends. Then of course there are my husbands lovely friends, who became my friends as a given when we got together 20 odd years ago. I also have traveling friends, who came into my life when I was backpacking and having all sorts of adventures….
When I moved to New Zealand I had a wonderful opportunity to make more friends. I wasn’t physically close to my UK friends any more, (though thank goodness for Facebook). So I set out on the look for people I clicked with. People I liked and who I felt liked me. Ticking off my friend criteria list in my head as I went along. Unlike the friends I had in the UK, I had a clean slate to chose new ones and that was pretty fun and exiting for me.
Here is my personal list of what a good friend should be. Naturally, yours will be different, as we all have individual needs and attractions. So here goes.
A friend who is honest.
A friend who makes me feel instantly at ease.
A friend who makes me laugh.
A friend who can put my needs before their own when needed.
A friend who is reliable and trustworthy.
A friend who sees the real me, even if I am trying to hide.
A friend who calls me up or writes, just to see how I am, not because they want something.
A friend who helps if I ask and helps if I don’t ask.
A friend who respects when I need to be alone.
A friend who doesn’t take a bad day personally.
A friend who doesn’t allow me to feel guilty.
A friend who has my back.
A friend who leads me to think in a helpful way.
A friend who is positive.
A friend who shares my joy.
A friend who holds my hand in sorrow.
A friend who brings a meal when I am ill.
A friend who never forgets a special day.
A friend who will go the extra mile to learn about something that is important to me. Like PDA.
A friend who loves me. No conditions.
These are the qualities I look for in a friend and the qualities I offer as a friend. It is with a heavy heart, that as I have grown older and been through some tough times, not all friends can be these things. In an ideal world, we would all be able to show these qualities, but life shapes us in different ways and its not always possible to find these things or offer them.
When we parent PDA, we require a great deal from friendship, and it is my observation, that many who need extra special friends don’t have them and are not always able to offer extra special friendships in return. But it’s what we need. So I would like to put it out there that when we ask for extra special friends, we receive extra special friends. And they do not have to come in the shape or form that we think they do. I have made some truly amazing friends through having PDA in my life. I think if you believe and you offer what you can of yourself, those things will come back to you. It is possible to attract what we want into our lives. Sometimes we do have to let go of people that are not helping us, where perhaps once they were. We have to learn our lessons from repeating old mistakes that do not serve us any more. We have to love ourselves enough to know who we want to come into our lives.
We all need good friends. We all feel lonely and un seen in many circumstances. We can all be that friend to our children. So, be the person you want others to be and see how many gems there really are.