This article is being penned with a lot of soul. It’s been-
Two years or so, since I have travelled,
Two years or so since I met up with friends.
Thanks to video calling, voice messaging and messaging we are able to keep in touch with people world wide,
But I say, thanks but no thanks!
There is power in the human touch and I’m a sucker for hugs, yeah, warm tight long hugs from my loved ones.
Virtual is not a fit,
Emoji’s are not a fit
Mushy messages are not a fit either.
I like the in-person PERIOD.
I have been blessed with friendships reigning 40+years, 25+years, and as new as 5+years. Each has a piece of my heart. They fit different pieces of the jigsaw puzzle of my life and fill my cup with gladness every time we meet.
Forty plus year friendships are the ones you can count on the palm of one hand, few and found, the daal chawal of life, the kind that satiate you like nothing else, loyal to the core buddies. They are family, relatives or family friends you have grown up with.
Let me start by telling you what this bunch of old friends are NOT,
They are not someone you catch up with, where the conversation is in stilted sentences.
They are not someone you are obliged to see but rather want to see.
They are not someone who you need to update with your job status, your net worth or your social life.
These friends make you feel accepted, adequate and valued for just who you are.
After all you grew up together.
Twenty plus year friendships are also few and found, those who come into your life through its journey and stay. I could call them my egg and toast, the protein fix of my life, my strength. These friendships are not your family or relatives but who you choose to be part of your life.
If a friendship can survive in spite of geography, life’s circumstances, its good and bad feelings, long periods of absences, different interests. They don’t mind that you haven’t been promoted yet or that you haven’t met the love of your life – that’s not why they’re friends with you. It’s the best version of friendship, the precious kind that will remain ‘till death do us apart.’ The reconnect is always from where you left off, comfortable and easy.
Then we have the ‘Caviar’ kind of friendships, newly cultivated friendships for business, social status and connects. They bring “in the moment” fun, a once in a while indulgence, a cheerful evening. They remain acquaintances.
I certainly do hope everyone has experienced all kinds of friendships and is able to differentiate between them.
I have, and here’s what these growing up and growing old together friendships has taught me:
– They offer the ease of being family without pressure.
Not everyone has these friends, even though we live in a world where communication has never been easier, we are a busy bunch and keeping in touch with those not involved in your day-to-day life does get difficult. True old friends can become closer than family, keeping in touch needs no appearances, they are worth their weight in gold and more.
– They remind us of who we were, who we are and what we may be.
Those past tales, those awkward moments shared, those fashion faux pas, they can get you to laugh till the cows come home. They look into your eyes and see beyond your smile. They have a better understanding of who you are now because they understand and know you were and where you’re from.
– They know how to make you feel good…immediately
When the road is rough, no matter how far apart, they will send you an order of your favourite comfort food- double cheese pizza, sev puri and chocolate fudge ice-cream. If geography permits, they will arrive with that box of tissues and a broad shoulder to share a hearty tear jerking evening.
– They agree to disagree on every matter and don’t need to like the same things as you.
The bond between old friends goes beyond common interests- it’s a link far stronger than the music you like or whether you work in different fields or where you like hanging out. It’s a deep, almost defining bond. You compliment each other rather than replicate one another.
– They know everything about you and love you anyway.
Acceptance for who you are, whether you have changed as a person, from humble to self-obsessed, from a gobbler to a health conscious freak, from tidy to untidy, from a drunk to a wine-sipper. It’s all okay.
– They are brutally honest. They’re likely to be the people who tell you not what you want to hear, but what you need to hear. They’ll do all this and will still come back for more. It isn’t always comfortable being around them; it can be awkward actually for often the truth hurts. That’s not what counts; it’s the honesty that the friendship owes you.
They are irreplaceable.
They say; Friendship is for a reason, a season or a lifetime.
Keep the lifetime close to your heart.