It seems everything we need to know in life we learn in preschool. My 4 year old has been repeating, “Mommy, to have a good friend, you’ve got to be a good friend!” No doubt a piece of sage advice bestowed upon her by her wonderful preschool teacher.Anyways, Bella tends to like to share these words of wisdom with Mommy. Normally, I say ,”Yes, sweetie. That is right!” But, this time I actually took the advice to heart and examined some of my own relationships.I’ve come to the realization that you get out what you put in and if you don’t then cut them lose. So many of us go through life making acquaintances that we let pass for friends, but there is definitely a difference, as one of my closest friends told me, ” It’s like coming home.” It’s the feeling of being safe and secure to be yourself and be accepted and loved unconditionally. I don’t know about you but that’s what I want out of a friend. I’m not one for superficial friendships, I don’t have the time or energy to play that game at this point in my life.If I call you my friend, I genuinely think of you as my friend, as family. I know that acquaintances have a place and I do have those relationships but I don’t call them my friends. I don’t want to spend inordinate amounts of time with them or subject my family to them. I don’t call them, text them, email them. I’m a Mommy, my time is precious and few, so I decided that I need to put in what I want to get out and if its not there I gotta cut it lose. It’s always disappointing though when you put it all in, only to find out the other person is only half way in. It’s actually very sad and you feel let down. I don’t want to be responsible for doing that to someone, and I don’t want to be that kind of an example for my daughters.
I learned a lot of life lessons from my daughter and her wise preschool teacher, and those wonderful women in my life who are my friends. We have just recently moved home from spending time in a delightfully beautiful part of the country called Chesterfield, Virginia. I am convinced that it must be the closest thing to heaven on earth; it is gorgeous and the people there are amazing human beings. I don’t know how they go there or why, but it works.Its like a vortex for goodness:) I hope I don’t embarrass anyone but this has to be said. I don’t want to spend my life wasting time and not telling people how important they are to me. When we first arrived, I was new and knew absolutely no one. The people I met there, were by far the most wonderful and genuine women I have ever met. They invited me into their lives, their hearts, their families.They were supportive and amazing. They made me feel like I was at home, even though I was hundreds of miles from where my “family” lived. I have never experienced anything like this before in my life. Who knew you could form true friendships and bonds with other women in such a short amount of time, especially as an adult. We left Virginia without a job but much richer people. I left with a heavy heart, and will miss these women and their amazing spirits . We may be geographically apart but they will always be in my heart.They took me in , extended friendship and sisterhood, when they didn’t even know me. It wasn’t for any reason other than to be kind to another human, but they will never know how much that kindness meant to me at that time and will always mean to me. I will miss our talks, long walks, saying hi in the hallways, sharing our childrens firsts in life, our laughter,prayers, the cocktails when we needed to decompress, but most of all I will miss their sisterhood.
I don’t need to mention names, but you all know who you are and you know how you touched my heart. You have taught me that to have a good friend, I need to be a good friend. I just hope I can live my life living up to the standard that you ladies have set. If all Mommies, women , could have that kind of bond that nurtured and supported one another like you did me…the world would be a better place. Thank you, my friends, all of you. I must be doing something right, to have all of you wonderful women as my friends! Just remember, as my 4 year old once told me, “To have a good friend, you’ve got to be a good friend!”