Before we begin, I would like to apologise for my social media absence recently. Over the past week, I have had some deeply concerning personal problems. Yet, from the flames, the inspiration for this post arose (getting quite poetic now, aren’t we?).
When tough times come knocking on our doors, we look to others for support and guidance. One of the first relationships we forge as children, are friendships in schools and playgrounds. Indeed, I too have friends that I have known since primary school (a whole thirteen years!).
But our closest friends aren’t who we have known the longest, they’re the ones that are there when you need them most. I know you’ve heard me go on and on about friendships (I’m a creature of habit, leave me be) but I do so for good reason. Whilst friendships can be the most powerful, and wonderful relationships we will ever have in our lifetime, they can be hard to come by.
In my nearly twenty-one years on the planet (so old and yet so young) I have gone through cycles of friends. The friends I had in high school were great (for that time) and I thought we would be friends forever (nope). Friendship circles that I had formed in college gave me some of the best giggles I’ve had (for that time), but we’ve parted ways. And no doubt some of the ‘lifelong’ friendships I’ve made in university will dwindle down to the important few.
Today, society forces us to believe that the number of followers on our social medias account to the amount of friends we have – a popularity scale. Look to your facebook (and if you don’t have facebook, I both applaud and look upon you with concern) and count how many people you actually care about. Sounds a bit harsh at first, but whose lives are important to you? Are you still friends with people you knew in Year 7? The ones you didn’t really like, but you’re facebook friends just because you know each other (vaguely)?
Followers do not equal friendships. The people we value are the people who come to us for help, and ones we can be openly honest to. This week, whilst going through my darkest moments, a friend told me that it was upsetting to see me so sad, because I have always been so strong. It touched me, not because in that moment I was weaker than I had been, but because of the strength they have seen in me for years.
Sometimes, friends know us even better than we know ourselves.
And they are right, I am strong (you is kind, you is smart, you is important).