Tuesday, November 01, 2005

The Cycle of Friendship

I've come up with a theory about friends. It's relatively simple - and I think it helps put perspective upon times when a friend seems to fade out of the picture of your life, and you aren't exactly sure why. See, as a kid - I wasn't able to have a large group of friends like I have today. For some reason, none of my friends liked each other, it was almost a competitive thing; so I had to have very seperate times with my friends. Sherry didn't like Karen; Karen didn't like Sharon. Sharon didn't like Sherry or Karen, but tolerated Michelle. Michelle didn't like any of them...you get the picture. It made doing things together difficult, and made keeping the friendships even more difficult. But I loved them all, as they were all so different - yet so much like me in many ways - it was worth the efforts.

Over the years, I've been fortunate to be able to build a large group of friends. Not all of them are part of one group - but just about all of my friends know each other, and there is none of that competitiveness. Big sigh of relief... At the same time, there's always the friend that was so near and dear - that just disappears. Despite the efforts of calling, writing, sending cards, etc., they just don't seem to have time. We all have a friend like this. It used to bother me. Alot. It doesn't any more.

Here's my theory...and maybe it will help you if you have a similar feeling about your friends. Think of your friends in groups: Group A: Best friends. Closest Friends. Maybe you see/talk to them many times in a week. Group B: Good friends, ones you might talk to frequently but don't necessarily confide in. Could be work friends. Group C: Aquaintances. Or, friends you've lost touch with. Friends you only send Christmas cards to. Not everyone can make it to be an "A" Group friend; but an "A" group friend can sometimes slip into a "C" group. Life cycles - it circles. Maybe you're in a different place than they are. Maybe you need time to yourself. Maybe they need it. Maybe you've grown apart at this point. Maybe you'll grow back together later. The difference between a true "A" friend and a "C" friend is this: No matter how much time has gone by, when you do finally talk - it's like no time has gone by at all. You pick up right where you left off. There's no real need for words or explanations because you just know.

Friends are like fuzzy pajamas or sweaters. They're comfort food - they are your "feel good". And when you have one, you don't let it go.

The ones that do go - well, take a step back and really think about the times you spent together.
Because maybe... they never were truly your friend after all.

16 comments:

GlitterGlamGirl05 said...

Wow, that post really got to me...I've had many friends in many of those groups but the friends in A are always there for me no matter what idiotic things I say or do.

Jerry said...

Rebecca you're insights are always inspirational to me and you got the "friends" thing down. excellent post.

Laura said...

Ditto and ditto...that was quite helpful!

G-bomb said...

It took my a whole year of therapy to learn what you just summarized. Well said, and so true. Learning that actually helped me to appreciate each of my friends a little more - because I could recognize how they fit into my life a little better.

clew said...

Well put, girlfriend. I tried to write a similar post a while back but sdon't think I did it quite so eloquently and poignantly. Now, if we can only get everyone to understand and acceopt these ideas, we'll be set :).

HUGS!

bigwhitehat said...

You know me. I think it is all fate and purpose. I see all friends as a gift from God. They all fit into his scheme for me. Sometimes one makes a soliloquy. Some times the same friend exits stage left. They all play a role in the big show that is my life. Wow. What a star studded show!

Kodijack said...

I have never spent this much time contemplating friends, ever. I guess this makes me very self-centered.

(Metallica's "Battery" playing)

We have not been able to secure "Crash" yet but it is a child free weekend so more extensive efforts are possible to secure it, wish me luck.

Rebecca said...

Hey all! It seems to me that women tend to relate to this topic far more so than men. But that issue in of itself is a post for another day....all about the differences between Cats & Dogs, so to speak. :) For those of you who do relate to it, I'm glad that you seem to think it's a good theory. :)

LOVE Battery. One of my favorite songs of theirs!

28goingon40 said...

OMG...Rebecca...I've totally realized this to be true, my problem is that I want only A friends and no B's and C's, so anyone that slips out of the A category I let slip out of my life completely...maybe I should rethink that a little.

Lori said...

Friends are blessings no matter what category they fit into. I have been extremely fortunate to have many "true-blue" friends. I'm wondering if it is a fading art...as there seems to be a little more "snippyness" going on amongst the younger generation. They need to realize that women should be allies instead of competition.

Well said, Rebecca.

McSwain said...

Yep, so true. I also have what I call the "golden circle." Lifelong friends who may live far away so I don't talk to them or see them often, but whenever we get together or talk it's as if no time went by. They're people who would do anything for me, and I for them, if called upon. A small, but beautiful circle it is.

ramblin' girl said...

great theory! thanks. and my friend was not purposely leaving me out the other night, it was unintentional, she's definitely an A, just busy these days!

Bainwen Gilrana said...

It's strange how friends can be so competitive and jealous early on. I'm glad that's something people tend to outgrow. I don't think I'd be a very happy girl if real life came complete with middle school-style drama!

Rebecca said...

Hey Bainwen - so true. There's definitely something to be said about growing up..... ;)

Thanks for coming by!

Destiny said...

a group A fren might even become a group C fren... how true... it's strange, isn't it? earth may be turning every second. but our friendships may not last a lifetime. i hv frens juz like urs. i got 2 very very close best frens. a male, a female. in front of me, they tolerate each other. behind the other, and in front of me, they're like enemies...

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