December 18, 2009

USA: "My idea of a prized circle of modern-day secret friends"

. PORTLAND, Maine / The Elder Storytelling Place / TimeGoesBy / December 18, 2009 Friends By Claire Jean
A friend is someone who can see through you but still enjoys the show. - Author Unknown
Close friends or best friends? Referring to someone as a best friend sounds exceedingly sophomoric to me today. Besides, declaring a person as a best friend carries more responsibility than I care to take on. A close friend, on the other hand, does not sound as taxing. We are interlocked either good or bad with our relatives. However, acquaintances can become our friends by choice. Upon looking back carefully as to the initial appeal, most likely, we find that they usually each had a capacity to satisfy a need. It sounds selfish and is. However, I must assume then to also be fulfilling some need in each and every one of them. I feel fortunate to have a mixture of personalities in my small circle of friends. One such friend would only be too happy to accommodate another’s wishes or recommendations while another might just flat out refuse regardless of the seemingly necessity or reasonableness of such request. Some continue to battle the natural process of aging while others appear comfortable and proud of where they are in life. Some are deeply religious while others practice no religion. Some are avid readers; some rarely pick up a book. Some love to spend time in the city; some strike a look of panic at the mere thought. And on it goes. Illustration When I want an honest opinion of something about myself, I know whom to ask. However, there have been instances when such directness could and has practically knocked me off my feet. Even so, it’s done with what’s truly believed and I admire the courage of someone being so open and honest. And, after all, I did ask. Another friend may well contest anything negative I might be feeling about myself whether it’s the manner of how rightly or wrongly a particular situation was handled right down to an opinion of new coat, hair style, etc. As long as it was my doing or my possession, that makes it good enough. Sometimes this reaction can prompt a soothing effect for a time, even though I might know or feel differently. Most importantly, I have finally learned these many years that we cannot make someone a friend. I’ve worked very hard at times as a younger person trying to make a meaningful relationship happen. Of course, there are exceptions. Sometimes it might take a little time to really see the person but at this stage of life, I don’t want to use my time hoping something will suddenly come together to help bolster a friendship. Reaching back many years ago, there used to be a fun activity whereby exchanges of cards, letters, etc. would be sent signed only as “your secret pal.” I also remember being part of a letter exchange program. We wrote to people far from where we lived. This most likely was a school project since I don’t know how else we were able to obtain names and addresses of those individuals we did not know and never - at least, I - got to meet. I don’t know anyone connected with Time Goes By personally, but feel as though I do. Overall, this group has been and hopefully will continue to be my idea of a prized circle of modern-day secret pals/friends.[rc] © 2009 Ronni Bennett.