1. have a sense of humour
2. be trustworthy
3. be intelligent enough to have a decent conversation and not just gossipy stuff
4. be kind enough to offer to bring chicken soup when I’m all alone and sick with a cold or flu
5. be able to view things from various perspectives but honour my perspective even if he/she doesn’t understand or approve of it
6. be interested in ME and my life
7. be inquisitive and have a desire to learn something new every day
8. be willing to share a room with me on a trip and bring your own earplugs
Well, I've been thinking about all the friends I've been fortunate enough to make over the past half century plus. Not all have remained in my life but as one leaves, another makes an appearance and sticks around for the long haul. Where have they come from?
When I think back to my childhood, I think that my younger sister was my best friend because we were so close in age. We played together, ate together, slept together and told each other secrets. We played with three girls who lived across the street. However, as we became teenagers, each of us spread our wings and found others with whom to share our time. My best friend through high school was a girl named Margaret, who went to a Christian Reformed church. Because of that, my parents never hesitated to allow me to go on outings with her and her church friends. Little did Mom and Dad know that they were a pretty wild and crazy bunch. Once, we piled 9 of us into a huge car and sped down the highway at 120 mph to Cultus Lake and back. On the way back to my house, the passenger door flew open as we made a turn. There were no seatbelts in those days so you can imagine the screaming from Margaret and me as the driver struggled to reach across us to get the door! We ended up going separate paths when she decided to begin her teaching career after 2 years of university and I continued on to get my degree. Years later, I found out that one of the teachers at my last school had taught with her at another small Christian school. I never found out her married name, so haven't been able to contact her.
I only have one friend from high school who has stayed the course with me. Di started at our high school in Grade 12 and we went on to university together, having lots of fun and a few dangerous adventures. I was maid of honour at her wedding in 1972 and we're still friends, albeit living across the continent from each other. We only get to see each other every 3 to 5 years, but it's like picking up from yesterday. Thankfully, these days we're able to keep in touch via email. Lots of other friends have come and gone over the years. Some I made when I was a new mother. Some were from church and others from reading or theatre groups to which I belonged. Some were business colleagues who made it into the "friend" department.
A friend is there for you at a time in your life when you need each other the most. You experience things together and learn from each other. For example, when I had my first child, I could turn to others who were going through the same sorts of things like rashes, screaming, not sleeping at night, etc. When I was married, I had friends with whom we'd go camping, out for dinner, over to each other's house for games nights or Christmas and New Year's Eve. After my husband died, I found out who were the true friends - not many. Suddenly, as a single woman, I found out that I was considered to be a threat to the other wives. I had to start all over to make friends with women who were also single. I knew none at first.
Now I'm happy to say that I consider many women my friends. Each of them brings something different to our friendship. Cathy and I enjoyed teaching together and we've traveled several times with each other, both to Europe and on small trips locally. She's the one that brings her own earplugs when we've shared a hotel room or cruise cabin. Johanna and I share a love of art, literature, music, lunching, walking and showing each other areas of our neighbourhoods. She's a city girl and I'm a suburban girl. Colleen and I share a history of loss, we both have daughters who've tried our patience and love many times, and over 10 years as she does my hair we've shared many a secret with each other. She's from South Africa. Wendy is a great friend who didn't care that I was single and she was happily married. Because her husband plays drums in a band, we even laughingly "date" each other occasionally - one time she's the "guy" and the next time, I am. We've attended the same church for many years and done the season tickets to theatre thing, too. I met Suzanne a couple of years ago through blogging. She lives in Arizona and when we had an opportunity to meet up in LA over the Labour Day weekend in 2005, we found that we're soul sisters. She had me to her place in February 2006 and took me to the Grand Canyon. Then we had a week together in California in February 2007 and she's planning to come up to Vancouver next summer - to get out of the hot desert. Overseas, I consider Marion in England and Jane in Wales to be my good friends. I met Marion through Cathy in 1997 and we've become great friends separate from Cathy, even though they're also friends. I met Jane through a blogging experience and met her a little over a year ago when I was visiting with Marion and her husband. I took the train to Wales and it was instant friendship. She took me to see the Welsh Living History Museum, an amazing place that I'd like to revisit in the spring or summer.
Every one of these women I consider to be a "best" friend, each in her own unique way and each one has some or all of the attributes that I listed above. Some of us got together to celebrate my birthday in October and some had never met each other before. But we all had things in common. We all love to travel. We all have some creative talent - painting, writing, drama, wood carving, crafts, flower arranging, etc. We're all grandmothers now and love to share photos and stories of our new babies. And did I mention that we all love to travel - both nationally and internationally?
Why did I start thinking about friends and friendship? I think it's because of the Christmas season being upon us and the fact that I'm feeling so grateful for the positive impact they've all had on my life. In some small way, I just wanted to acknowledge them and thank them for being there for me when I need them and for allowing me to be there for them when they need me.
I did this silly little quiz to see what kind of friend I am and I was pleasantly surprised. What kind of friend are you? Do you have a friend that deserves your acknowledgement?
|You Are a Good Friend Because You're Loyal|
And part of your loyalty means that you'll do a lot for your friends. You definitely go the extra mile.You'll even do great things for friends without them asking. After all, that's what friendship is all about.
You are truly a friend for life. And you have friends you've known since you were a kid.Your friends can count on you to do a favor, remember a birthday, or just be there to listen.
Your friends need you most when: They can't turn to anyone else
You really can't be friends with: Fickle people who change friends quickly
Your friendship quote: "Friendship doubles your joys, and divides your sorrows."
http://www.blogthings.com/whatmakesyouagoodfriendquiz/">What Makes You a Good Friend?