There is an older song where the singer sings about having friends in low places. I've never really felt that way because I've always felt that my friends were the opposite of low. But tonight, I was talking to one of my friends that doesn't live around here and it dawned on me that my friends, as spread out as they may be, don't ever really go anywhere. Here's why.
I've never had a problem making friends. Some people have that problem and it's something that they have to work hard at, but for me, it somehow comes naturally. That doesn't make me better than people who need to work at it, we are just different. I've had to work to maintain certain friendships...I've had to work hard in some cases.
But I think the thing that I realized a few years ago was that I have an ability to hang on to friends and do the long-distance friendship thing rather well. I have friends all over the country and we are just as close today as we were when we were in the same place. In some cases, we are closer now than we were when we were actually in the same place.
As I am approaching the end of a chapter of my life, I'm hoping that this stays true to my life. There are a handful of people here that I hope to be closer to a year from now than I am today and if my history says anything, then we will be.
The scary part of all of this is that it's a two-way street and I've been incredibly lucky so far to have people who are willing to work at it too. When we're kids, we dream about what we would wish for if a genie popped out of a lamp. I think I know what I would wish for now. I'd wish that these people that mean more to me than anything in my life would work at it as hard as I'm going to. Because we've needed each other. Because we are going to need each other. Because there isn't anything more important in mylife than the people in it.
My second wish would be to cure AIDS and my third wish would be 3 billion dollars. But the first would be the friend thing.
(Sidenote: The above pictures are of my friends. Jonathan in New Mexico, Travis in California, Chase in Illinois and Ruth in New York. I've known them for years and they are irreplaceable in my life, each for different reasons, but since this blog is about me, I will say this: They each understand me and accept me for me. No pretense, nothing hidden, nothing secretive...just me and all the flaws I can manage to continue to have. While they are in no means my only close friends that aren't within driving distance, I love these guys and I needed them to know, because if Friends has taught us nothing, it's that people like to be told they're loved.)