It’s no coincidence that the dear friend I talked to on the phone today, also just posted a blog about friendship. When I called, I hadn’t heard her voice for several months but as soon as we began talking it was as if any time between our conversations or miles between our homes vanished. And despite the fact that we’d talked over an hour, it was as if we’d only just begun to catch up!
On the other hand, our honesty meant we got right to the core of what had been happening in our lives. I know there were times when we both felt vulnerable, but that’s what made it beautiful, too, because we were sharing our hearts – the painful, inexplainable, changeable, enjoyable experience of life without edits and yet, without having to share every detail of our stories or what we felt, we just knew.
It got me thinking about close friendship. That it’s when we allow ourselves to be open – hearted, we get the most in return. Not out of expectation but because that’s just how life works, how acceptance of ourselves and eachother works. We may not have walked the same path but to be able to walk in the shoes of those we love for a moment and truly say ‘I hear you’ is such a gift. Even in words unspoken. Especially in words unspoken.
It is a rare treasure to find such a safe place to BE but a place I feel blessed to share with a handful of wonderful people and is perhaps why it can come as a shock or disappointment to be met with an occassional, less than supportive experience from others I wanted to trust as much. Having said that, I am aware that those who push my buttons actually give me the opportunity to look in the mirror and face the parts of myself that are not so healthy. So while they may never cheer me on in the same way my best friends do, my uncomfortableness gives me the impetus to make changes I’ve been tip-toeing around, and reminds me of the abundance of love I share with the true friends who are there for me no matter what!
No man (or woman!) is an island. We’re in this together! So if you are wishing for closer friendships or new ones to share your life with, reach out and share your heart! Our pain may have us believe it’s safer to remain hidden but the world is full of kindness if we choose to see it that way. And then instead of focusing on the risk it may take to open up, we see that there is far greater risk in the doing the opposite.
As Leo Buscaglia said:
“To love is to risk not being loved in return. To hope is to risk pain. To try is to risk failure, but risk must be taken because the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing.”
Will you take a risk with me?
Much love to you, to Laura who inspired this post, and my amazing friends who see my best and worst but love me anyway… you know who you are!!