I've met tons of people that I've liked over the course of my lifetime, but a good friend, a best friend, is much more rare to find, and even more rare to keep!
Nevertheless, I feel totally blessed with the good friends I do have! What I find remarkable is that once I make a good friend, I keep them forever! In thinking about the people that I feel close to recently, I realized that my best friends are associated with the early stages of my life. I'll tell you what I mean.
There is Janie, whom I met in Girl Scouts when we were about 8 or 9. Janie was my very first best friend. Next came Kathy and Davey, friends from my teens. My 20's best friend was the Big Guy! Yep, Mikey was my best friend. Ratchlet came into the picture then too and she has been more than just my daughter her whole life. Also by that time Little Sis had grown up and it was exciting to find another best friend right at my elbow. My 30's came along and with it came Cathy, Tim, and Helen, my music connections.
The fun part of all of this is that all of these best friends I made so long ago, are still very important to me and I am still in touch with all of them! I'm very fortunate to be able to say that.
Then my 40's hit and there were a few work friends and lots of theatre friends, but no real, long-lasting "best" friends came along. In my 50's it became lots harder to meet new people and the friends I made during that time were more fleeting and again no BFF emerged. I have lived in Austin since my mid-50's and I can't really say I made any true friends here either. In fact, in the past 9 years, the best that I've been able to do is meet a few nice people, just a step or two up from an acquaintance.
The truth of the matter is that I tend to irritate people. I speak my mind and sometimes get overly impressed with my own opinion. It makes people mad. Can't blame them, I guess. But I should remember that you reap what you sow.
I'm into my 60's now and, although I've always been a bit of a loner, I sometimes get kind of lonely and wish I had a best friend nearby to just hang out with. Phone calls and emails are nice, but its not the same.
So, my old friends are my Best Friends; they are the ones who know me best. They love me the same way I love them, in spite of all flaws and shortcomings. We understand each other. We laugh together, get silly together, celebrate together, enjoy each other and pretty much have fun whenever we're together, we also cry together and mourn together. They taught me what "Friendship" means. Sadly, with the exception of Mikey and Ratchlet, none of my best friends live anywhere near Austin! And I miss them, and I thank them for letting me into their lives, for these are my good and true best friends forever and ever (as long as I don't irritate them too much!)
With love to: