Throughout our lifespan people weave themselves in and out of our lives. As kids and teenagers I feel like we strive for quantity over quality because we place popularity on such a pedestal and are trained to think the more “friends” we have the better off or cool we are. Yet the older I get the more I’ve learned that, in fact, just the exact opposite is true. The quality of the friends and people in our daily lives exponentially outweighs the quantity. Sure I have plenty of acquaintances and people I’m friendly with, but the number of people that I can truly say are my good friends, or “ride or die bitches” as we like to call each other, has been happily narrowed down over the years to a few select groups of people. These are the people that I talk (well okay, text with) on the regular. But even if we miss some time here or there, that’s okay too. These are the ones that we actually go out of our way to make plans to hang out with each other. Because we all know that life happens, but we’re important enough to each other to make it a point to still see one another on at least a semi-regular basis. These are the ones who know each other’s secrets, we don’t judge (or if we do, we certainly judge openly… And that’s okay too). These are the ones that make each other laugh until we cry, that give the best hugs, and always have each other’s backs.
They say that everyone comes into your life for a reason. And that I do believe. Sometimes, however, we can’t be rid of the crazies quick enough, but still I believe we have something to learn from everyone. A few years ago I was introduced to someone who today I consider to be one of my most special friends. When we first met, you can believe I was full of all sorts of judgement as I checked her out with her beautiful hair, perfect body and infectious smile. Thankfully my ridiculous judging didn’t last long once we started talking, and I discovered that it was truly possible to be both beautiful and a genuinely kind human being. And though we’ve only known each other for a few years, she is one of those people that has taught me so much.
Recently this sweet woman has been thrown a huge life curve ball. I feel deflated, heart broken and completely helpless. Yet while I have no control over the future of anyone’s life, what I can control are my words and my ability to share the important life lessons that this special woman has taught me. Because everyone deserves to have such a special and influential friend in their lives.
I think the most important thing I’ve learned from my friend is the importance of simply showing up. Despite all the grief I give her about her various luxuries in life, this woman works her ass off on the daily to provide for her family. To be there for them. And is constantly going out of her way to do special things for her girls to simply reinforce her love for them. But even after all that, out of our little local core group, it’s almost always her that is taking the time to plan outings for us or just simply dragging our exhausted mom asses out of our houses. She’s the one that’s sending out the group texts reminding us of the date for Wine Chat Wednesday, even though it’s supposed to be the same date every month. And even when it’s -50 degrees outside and all I want to do is lay on my couch in my fat pants, she has taught me that that simply isn’t good enough. Because friends show up for each other. Friends make it a point to hang out. And anything less simply isn’t an option.
Another huge lesson my friend has taught me is simply how to forgive. If there’s one thing I’m good at, it’s holding a grudge (just ask my husband!) My friend is so much smarter than me. She knows that harboring anger and ill thoughts does nobody any good. She’s been such a great role model to me in simply forgiving, letting go of any negativity and moving on. Because life is just too short not to. The world would be such a better place if we all followed her example.
Along the way there’s also been several other “smaller” life lessons, although in my opinion just as equally important.
- Bless this woman’s heart her taste in music could use some improving. However, even when surrounded by horrible music, she’s proved to me that it truly is possible to have a good time.
- Not only is it normal, but it’s absolutely crucial to slow down every once in awhile and simply remember how to feel. We often get so caught up in our chaotic daily lives that we don’t necessarily give ourselves the necessary and imperative time we, as humans, need to acknowledge our own feelings.
- Believe it or not, body suits can actually look good…on the right person!
- Everyone has their own insecurities and faults. But if we can’t own who we are, we need to reevaluate. We’re all human and none of us are perfect. But there comes a point in our adult lives that if we don’t feel confident in who we are, albeit good or bad, it’s our responsibility alone to change what we don’t like.
Life is confusing, at times difficult, and every once in awhile it simply knocks you on your ass. And in these moments may we all be blessed enough to have a friend as special and inspirational as this one is to me. And more importantly, may we all be that friend to someone else.