“People come into your life for a reason, a season, or a lifetime. When you figure out which it is, you’ll know exactly what to do.” – Michelle Ventor
There was a point, in my younger days, where it would really upset me to “lose” people who I took the time to get close to. I now realize that fear is what lead me toward relying on people who were not good for me. Several of the friendships I’d obtained through the years were not healthy. They bordered on co-dependency and were based on a skewed sense of security. Tough as that was, I also had this habit of holding onto people who needed me in some way, to the point of becoming a complete doormat in the process.
Looking back, the loss of those relationships was a necessity, as they were based in toxicity, false identity, and a need to have control over everything. I saw a reflection of myself in the people I’d befriended that I did not like or understand. Though it was a time of my life full of turmoil, constant fighting, and pain, I’ve come to find the lesson in why we became friends in the first place: to know what NOT to do.
I now understand that people go different ways in life and sometimes have to take a different path that can’t be followed. It doesn’t mean that the time we shared together making memories, or the moments where we spilled our deepest secrets was all for naught. I’ve learned a lot of valuable things from each person I let inside my heart and I hope they learned a thing or two from me. That’s the way friendship is supposed to work. True friendship will never be lost, no matter where the road leads any of us.
Some people really are just in our lives for a short period of time to touch our hearts briefly. I’ll always cherish those who have taken a few moments of their time to poke their heart into mine to make life a little brighter or more manageable.
Upon reminiscing, I find that I still occasionally speak to friends from the past, though we’re not as close as we once were. I still meet my best friend from Jr. High for lunch with her horde of children once or twice a year. I catch up with one of my closest childhood friends via Facebook every few months. I hear from a few others every couple of years. Those blasts from the past remind me of more innocent times and keep me aware of the changes that life can take.
I also have friendships where we dropped contact and picked right back up, years later, practically where we left off. These friendships have grown over time and, as we’ve learned more about the world around us, they have blossomed into something wonderful. I can’t imagine not being friends with these people who empower each other and create a better, more accepting place. Although the number is few, the blessings are many.
We all have lifetime friends that we’ll never, ever give up on. They teach us about loyalty and fighting and pushing each other to be better people.
That’s what friendship means to me.