My yoga teacher likes to share quotes with the class.
Yesterday, hers was about friendship, about choosing wisely who you let in as a friend. Be careful, the quote said. But once you decide to friend someone, open up. Tell them things you would only tell yourself. Be real about it all. Be genuine. Be true.
I’ve been thinking about that. About the notion of friends and acquaintances and Facebook “friends.” About all the people we know and how many of them we actually know.
Not very many.
And I think that’s OK. A friend of mine a few months ago over lunch told me that she’d read somewhere we could only ever have two true friends.
I might argue the number could fit on one hand because I do feel I’m lucky enough to have at least five good, true friends, if not a few more. But I definitely agree with the notion.
People are afraid of opening up. That’s why the social circle of friends at the bar or the gym or work or our kid’s school is big – and safe. Usually, you’re not expected to talk about your insecurities or your failures or your bad skin or bad relationships or any of that. You just show up and make small talk and drink and laugh or sweat or watch the girls chase your son around.
And I know that not everyone is lucky enough to have a close friend who’s known you since you were someone else (a kid, literally or figuratively) or a friend who’s known you a much shorter time but gets you just the same. A friend you trust and love.
I know I’m lucky to have a few of those. Definitely on my list of things I’m thankful for.
I’m meeting one of those friends this afternoon. Another of those friends just booked a flight to Omaha for my wedding in April. Yet another one is planning to make the 11-hour drive from Western Colorado. I’m hopeful another one will be able to fly in from the East Coast. The few others live here already and will be there, too. I hope they know how much that means.
I can’t talk about friendship without thinking of my best friend growing up. We had countless sleepovers, camp experiences, Ouija board freakouts, first kisses (with boys!) … and so much more. I can’t do the relationship justice in words.
The time since I’ve seen her last is far too long, and I’m fairly sure I’m long overdue returning an e-mail. But I think about her everyday.
And last night, while driving back from dropping my babies off with their grandparents for the weekend, this song came on the radio. I turned it up.
“Pink Houses” – John Mellencamp
This one always makes me think of my childhood true friend and all the others I’m lucky to have now.