Of friends and friendship

Friend: a person who you like and enjoy being with

Chief, you can be my BFFAAF!
Chief, you can be my BFFAA!

I have had many different friends over the years.

When I was a little girl, I had one true friend, my BEST friend.  Back then we didn’t use acronyms like “BFF” or call each other “besties”.  We were simply spelled out: best friends.  Our parents were married (no, not to each other), we didn’t have to keep up with numerous sports or after-school activities, and our summers were spent at home doing “kid stuff”, eventually getting bored , and that was fun!  She lived next door to me, and we were the same age-well, six months apart, but in the same grade. We did just about everything together, and no matter which house we were playing at or in it was home.  We spent every Friday night having sleep overs.  We liked the same things: Barbies, playing house, drawing or coloring (although I enjoyed getting a little dirtier playing outside sometimes), and eating my mom’s homemade pizza.

Oh, the good ol’ days of stylish hats and glasses!

When my best friend’s dad got a job in another state we were in the 4th grade, and we were devastated.  Honestly, in grade school I was SUPER shy, and I had no idea how I was going to survive without her.  They moved, life changed, and that same year the grade school we attended, conveniently located at the end of our block, was closed, and I had to be driven several miles away to a new school.  No best friend to help ground me.  No friends, period.  Just a shy kid wishing she could disappear into the cracks and hide until it was all over.

Friends are the best!
My kid is NOT shy.  Friends are the best!

It took me many friendships to understand that they are sometimes fleeting, sometimes steadfast, but each one has a contribution to make in my life.  I used to get so upset when friends would stop being friends.  When they’d move onto someone new, or leave town, or turn into someone I didn’t know anymore.

As I grew older this ebb and flow of people into and out of my life got easier.  I was able to see the connection we all had in one way or another as the timeline moved along.  I could step outside of myself and watch the relationships as parts of a whole.  I think this began to happen about my mid-20’s when all of a sudden changing friends didn’t necessarily mean disappointment or hurt feelings.  It only meant “change”.

Grade school friends, long gone.  Junior high and high school friends, not far behind.  College comrades, co-workers, church friends saying, “We gotta get together!”, “Let’s keep in touch.”, “I’ll call you soon!”  I’m sure their intentions were real, or not–maybe it’s just what people say.  Even me.  But, either way, I knew that when one set of friends was heading to a new frontier, another set was on its way back into mine.  Certainly, I have maintained contact with some of my “old” friends–back in the day we used letter writing and phone calls, now we maintain with Facebook technology.  My best friend from childhood will always be my dearest BEST FRIEND.  We haven’t seen each other in several years now, but the bond is forever.

My best friend from childhood, my best friend for life. XO
Best friends all grown up and passing it on!  XO

Last year I opted to move away from one particular friendship that had become toxic.  Once ready, there was no fear, as I knew it was the right thing to do.  I’d say only a handful of times have I had to DECIDE to end a friendship for this reason.  Maybe not even a handful, maybe only a couple, one being when I got sober over 15 yeas ago.  It’s nice that situations typically have a way of handling themselves (providing I’m not the road block), but this one was lingering, and the longer I let it the worse it became.

It’s hard to consciously break away from someone you’ve grown to care about and love like family, but maturity and faith have given me the insight to take heed. It was even harder because this person was also our horse trainer-the only one we knew.

Not long after this decision I rescued Fancy, and I pride myself in this choice today.  Again, as I look back I see the connection.  I see a beautiful panorama of images showing me the transition from one part of my life to another.  One set of friends to another.  It’s so perfectly clear.

Tell me more...but can I have a treat first?
Chief says, “Tell me more…but can I have a treat first?

Recently we had a barbecue at the ranch along with a horsey play day for all to enjoy.  Everyone showed up, and we had 11 horses and riders in the arena together, cheering each other on as we each tried our hand at the obstacle courses laid out.  Fancy, I know, was up in heaven grazing on healthy green grass and looking down at us, celebrating the spirit of horses with our barn buddies and new horsey family of Chief and Star.

Fancy, we miss you but know you're happy!
Fancy, we miss you but know you’re happy!

The ebb and flow of friends and friendship brought us to this place.

As I rode Chief and observed the group my heart welled with gratitude for these wonderful women (and girls) who’ve become so important to us today.  Once new friends, some will pass, some will be forever like my best friend from childhood.  Either way, they are an important part of our journey-a piece of the puzzle what would be missing had not earlier lessons been learned and paths chosen.

I'm gonna win!
I’m gonna win!
Me n Denise 2
Almost ready to begin the games.
Good friends, great view!
Good friends, great view, while Maycee and the others practice their moves!

 

Chief & Star enjoying their goodies.
Chief & Star enjoying their goodies.
Enjoying pulled pork sandwich!
Pulled pork sandwiches-yum!
Chief, what do you think?
Until next time….now let’s ride!

 

Readers, blogging FRIENDS…do you have friendships that have lasted a lifetime as well as new friends who you cannot imagine having never known?  Please share!

And, as always, life is short, so grab a buddy and give a chuckle!

XOXO,

SWM

 

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Author: singleworkingmomswm

I love to write, and I love raising my daughter. The two combined have prompted me to create a blog about being a single working mom. Life's a trip, and I tend to take the windy roads.

10 thoughts on “Of friends and friendship”

  1. You have the better way of looking at losing friends, a positive outlook. I moved to my current town over 2 years ago and I thought I had a long time friend here… stopped in to see her at her house, she said she’d stop by my house… nadda. Then she moved away, no desire on her part to contact me. I thought I had a friend, guess not! I suppose, like you mentioned, she played a certain part during our time of knowing each other. I would say I have one friend in this town, and several aquaintances. Seems like people are too busy to get together, they’re at work, or when they’re home, they have so many obligations. I have given up on finding a great friend in this town. The town I moved from, I had many friends. I have one life-long ‘best friend’, we’ve been friends for over 50 years.

    1. Thanks for sharing your story! It is really hard to move to a new place and start over making new friends. That is what happened to me when I moved to the Central Coast. I knew a few people here, but they already had their lives in place and I felt like I was trying to fit into their mold. Thankfully, I ended up getting a job in a supportive work place that became my family away from home, and after 6 years of living here, I feel as if I’ve finally found a good group of friends where me and my daughter belong as part of a whole. I think it just takes time and not expecting much so that when a good friend comes along it’s a nice surprise! I hope you are able to make and find more friends the longer you stay where you are. 🙂 XOXO-Kasey

  2. I love this so much.

    My siblings have been my lifelong friends. I love, too, that I’m growing into friendship with someone I’ve known since the moment of my birth–my godmom. 🙂

    I started making lifelong friends around the time I was 19. Sometimes I look back and realize I have friendships that have endured one and a half decades … that from having only my siblings! It’s a joyous thing, and it does take away the sadness of occasionally having to walk away from someone else.

    1. The closeness you have with your sibling is something I don’t have with mine, and I think that’s why it was so hard on my when my friends during the school years disappeared. But, those who are tried and true still remain, and even though I can’t see them and catch up face-to-face, I know that if the opportunity presented itself, it would be like no time had passed. 🙂 XO Have a good weekend, Deb!

  3. Hello my California Friend! Yes, I have many friends who are gone from my life but not my heart or without leaving me with something, words or an experience that has added to who I am. Some fleeting, some forever. Hope you can make it to NY some time, Friend!
    xoxoxo Karen

    1. Me, too, Karen! I plan to make it there one day….it is on my list! I want to go to that beautiful cabin of yours and kick our my feet and talk girl talk over a cup of tea until the wee hours of the morning. 🙂 XOXO-Kasey

  4. I love this idea of the ebb and flow of friendships. I’ve found that when one friendship has ended, another one has eventually taken its place. Each one has taught me something. I miss a lot of my friends, though. Seems we’re all busy raising young children, which is all-consuming much of the time. I guess this is the time of my life for making mommy friends 🙂

    1. Yes, raising our kids takes precedence over other relationships. I’m in a different time than a lot of women my age-most already have teenagers and thus they are able to move around more freely and do more things with each other because the kids are doing their own thing. My daughter is still young at 10, and so I do everything with her, of course! But, there are stages in life, and eventually I know we will be missing these days once they pass and we have more “freedom”. Our friendships will change, too. 🙂 Thanks for reading!! XOXO-Kasey

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