I have had a lot of cause to think about friendship lately, both good and bad. The bad is a bit too close to home and far too unresolved to delve into here, but the good has really stuck with me. I just went home to NY to visit family, but also got the opportunity to see my friends, and because of the bad side of things, their fantasticness struck me anew. Thus, it got me thinking about what makes a good friend and a bad one. Rather than dwelling on the bad, I’m going to focus on the good. It’s my policy not to mention people directly by name on this blog, but I hope my friends are a) reading and b) recognize themselves in this list.
I’ve recently come to realize friendship is:
- definitely not being a kid person by any stretch of the imagination, but always asking about my pregnancy and my baby, and even being eager to meet not just me, but both of us, on a European jaunt.
- meeting up after ages of not seeing each other or talking much and being able to chat just like it’s old times, as though minutes and not months have passed.
- showing up to a baby shower after not seeing each other for literally decades just to wish well after reconnecting on Facebook.
- hosting said baby shower and letting some of the guests stay five hours past the time everyone else has left.
- Driving an hour each way and paying a toll just to hang out with me for an afternoon–with two kids under four.
- Working an extra chance to see me during lunch hour in between meetings.
- Listening to me go on and on (and on and on and on) about a problem that keeps niggling at me and offering up some honest sympathy.
- Going to Target with me just because, and then buying an outfit for my baby when I decide buying 3 is too many because it’s too cute to pass up.
- Remembering that my husband (who they’ve only met a couple of times) had a thing for calling our kid Velociraptor, and buying tons of dino stuff accordingly.
- Dropping off some tasty pastries at my door after I did her a tiny favor.
- Being reluctant to say goodbye after spending an afternoon together.
- Finding, somehow, a baby book version of Romeo and Juliet because of my obsession with Shakespeare (FYI: it leaves out the double suicide).
- Calling to ask with vested interest how I am doing in my pregnancy. Sometimes I forget and wonder why she asks so enthusiastically how I am, and then I remember that I’m pregnant, and well being is something of a moving target these days.
- Being really concerned when the fried chicken place I really wanted to go to was closed and listing other restaurants we could go to so I could get my fried chicken fix, despite it being just a passing pregnancy craving.
- Though this isn’t recent, it’s still something that strikes me: being willing to travel across an ocean and spend a ton of money on plane tickets and a dress to be a bridesmaid in my wedding.
In my life I have been incredibly lucky in friendships. I made friends for life in high school and just added to the list as time went on. My husband would hate this post because it’s all about feelings and is very soppy, but all of this is nevertheless true. If I can make one new friend over here who is half as good to me as these guys are, I’ll consider myself very lucky indeed.