5 August 2014

A reason, a season or a lifetime

It is said that friends come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.

Hoarders like myself try not to let any of them go because if I liked them for a reason, surely I can keep them for a season or even a lifetime?

But it doesn't always work like that.

People change. Your life changes.  Their lives change.  You disagree over something you think is big and it's not, but by the time you realise that you've actually forgotten what you disagreed on, the moment has passed.

You move house, cities, countries.  You may even have done this before social media.  You lose numbers, lose addresses, lose touch.

Some people fall out because they are too proud to apologise.  Or too hurt to acknowledge their own culpability.  Or just because.

Some people don't fall out, they drift.  And friendships are like relationships - they require work.  You can't complain somebody never calls if you never call them.  Nobody owes you friendship.

And if you only ever accept invitations, not issue them, people stop asking.  Not because they don't like you, they just assume that if you had the same interest, you'd put in the same effort.

People that have just had babies or have young families quite often feel isolated and bemoan the loss of friendships and accuse people of not caring.  It's probably not that, it's probably that you just haven't said anything apart from "it's so hard, I'm so tired, and you'd never understand" for about 12 months and they are waiting for you to reemerge from the fog.

I like my friends.  I assume my friends like my friends.  This is not always the case.  Sometimes your friends find your other friends to be awful.  Which is always a mystery but there you go.  On the other hand, sometimes your friends like each other so much they end up having sex with each other and that is also a mystery. And one you'd prefer they didn't discuss with you because 'ewwww'.

Sometimes you have nothing in common with your friends.  You just enjoy their company.  Sometimes you are friends with people because you work with them.  Sometimes you are friends with people because you live with them.  Sometimes this works.  Sometimes it doesn't.

And we think that nothing is ever as awkward as when we used to date as teenagers, but finding friends in your adult years that suit the new improved you, the finally comfortable in your skin you, the parenting you, the career change you, the new fitness freak you, the living in a new country you, is just as hard.  You have to exchange numbers, make dates.  You don't want to appear needy so does the three day rule apply? Or do you just call them and say 'DUUUDDEEEEE'.  When is it appropriate to add them to your facebook friends list?  WHAT IF THEY DON'T HAVE FACEBOOK?

Friendships are always awkward to start.  Maybe only for two minutes and the first tequila shot, but they are worth it.  Those lifetime friends, the people you call your tribe, they are the ones that give life it's messy, chaotic, diversity. They are the ones that have your back as they kick your arse.

Those friends.  You have them for a reason.  And a season.  And a lifetime.

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