I had a lovely weekend at the wedding of two of my dear friends. Its been a long time since I've been so a wedding ceremony and I had forgotten just how solemn the promise is that two people make to each other when they are joined in marriage. It got me thinking that friendship is also a solemn promise although it may not share much in common with marriage. What is true of both, is that as you choose your wife or husband, you choose your friends and perhaps more importantly they choose you. In this way I believe that with friends you can often have a closer relationship than with your own family, after all you do not choose your brother, sister, mother, father, aunts, uncles, cousins etc. They are a group of people thrust upon you who you may or may not love dearly. Friends though occupy a unique place, they are in your life because you want them to be.
Friends to me should be your fiercest critic and strongest ally. They should stand by you when you fall and be with you when you achieve your dreams. They do not judge nor take sides. Most of all they offer succor and hope when it seems there is none.
My group of friends are very important to me. They are all of those things mentioned and more. They are the people that I most want to be with and hope to share at least some of the ups and downs of my life with. Above all else, friends are important because they are the people you can trust. Like a marriage, trust is the cornerstone of a long-lasting mutually enhancing friendship. Without trust, there is no relationship whether it be friendship or marriage. I trust my friends implicitly. They are people I feel I can share my problems, my fears, my hopes and my dreams with. I hope that they feel the same with me.
I have in the past had a rather negative view of friendship, often losing friends that seemed very dear to me for very petty or inconsequential reasons. Sometimes, it has simply been through moving on and either not bothering or not caring to keep in touch. Consequently I have no friends from school or college who I maintain any contact with. It didn't seem to matter at the time but as I've got older, I've come to realise that everyone who has been involved in your life as a friend, never really leaves you. I sometimes think about them and wonder where they might be now and selfishly consider whether they ever remember me. Did I leave any mark in their life like they did in mine?
This blog, although it is largely motivated by selfish reasons, is for my friends. This is the place where I can share and say things that either would be inappropriate or difficult for me to say in person. The reason for my reticence is not because I doubt my friends rather it is that I doubt myself. I hope that I am never dishonest but I know that sometimes for me saying the things that really matter is impossible and its only in words not spoken that I can find my voice.