A Karmic Sandbox (karmasoup) wrote,
A Karmic Sandbox
karmasoup

Keep Smiling, Keep Shining

ATTRITION

I don’t have any friends.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a total recluse or a social pariah or anything.  My various media profiles each have a few hundred connections, though I’m regularly whittling them down from the several hundred they used to have, as I come to value closer relations the older I get, and I no longer see the point in maintaining an open window into my life for that one dude I met at that one event that one time, and the like. 

My mom has a best friend — there’s 1400 miles between them, but they get together at least once a year or so, and stay in touch regularly.  They’re around the same age, have a lot of shared history in common, as well as similar family backgrounds.  Most important to both of them, though, is sharing the same faith, and everything else that bonds them just sort of falls into place behind that.

I’ve never had anything resembling that level of closeness or longevity in a friendship, though it certainly looks appealing from the outside, and I’ve often wished I understood such a basic and valued life blessing firsthand.  There’s an entire widely popular movie genre dedicated to the experience of the “buddy adventure,” giving the impression it’s so commonplace, it seems like most everyone must have that one special someone who will drop everything in a heartbeat to take their call, be by their side, or stand in as an accomplice to their next half-baked hair-brained scheme.  But not me.


There’ve been a handful of times in my life I’ve had a best friend.  In each case, I hadn’t known we were best friends until the other declared it to be so.  I’m usually not the first to notice when associations make it to any of the “stages” many might take for granted... I rely on people who put stock in such things to keep me in the know about the milestones we’ve reached and labels we’ve garnered, and I’m usually accommodating enough to go along with it, so long as it comes from a person whose company I enjoy, especially more than others.


CHARTREUSE
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EMMA
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Rebekah
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JAMES
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There were others along the way I admired enough to have a strong desire to get closer to, but never felt I was the “right” kind of cool, or just never worked it out to be more connected with — especially if our paths didn’t cross that much — or we just didn’t click naturally in a way that allowed for a more interpersonal link between us.  I haven’t done much lamenting for any specific losses of friendships that never came to be, but I have questioned how it is I’ve never been able to either maintain or deepen friendships I’ve established.  Is there something wrong with me as a friend?  As a woman?  As a person?

There’ve been three different people I’ve imagined would have been by my side when I waited at the end of an aisle for a lover to take my hand.  But none of them stayed around long enough to still be in my life when that moment finally came — not even the one who brought that lover into my life.  There was no obvious choice to take on that responsibility — instead, four of my five brothers, three of their wives, and one cousin stood up for us...  so it’s at least a good thing I’m close to my giant family.

Minion says I’m being too hard on myself — he says I’ve been given a romantic false impression the rest of the world functions in a way it just doesn’t, and I shouldn’t expect my life to be the same as others, because we’re not like other people (have I mentioned there are so many very great reasons I’m crazy in love with this man?).  He’s right though... stories suggesting characters can hang onto lifelong best friendships have them growing up on the same block, experiencing the same history, going through the same changes together.  But that isn’t how things happen for most of us.

In my case, I was raised in abject poverty, endured countless childhood traumas at the hands of people closest to me who were supposed to safeguard my best interests, survived the upheaval of a broken home, was taken from my family, and had been in 17 different foster homes by the time I reached second grade.  I’ve moved at least 43 times in my life — that I can remember.  If you happen to be an easygoing, precocious, outgoing prodigy, that kind of upbringing teaches you to relate to lots of different types of people, make connections easily and quickly, but never get too attached.

I guess when I look at it from that
angle, considering how much influence formative years have on the overall trajectory of life, it’s a wonder I ever had any friends, or settled down at all.  But I have, and I did.  So maybe I should take a different perspective... instead of seeing myself as failure for not maintaining a long-term best friendship, maybe I should see it as a success that I overcame all the obstacles in my way to ever have one.  And, in reality, I do still have one.

My
best friend is my partner.  My lifemate.  The one I most want to come home to.  The one I can’t wait to share my day with.  The one I always want to be with.  We don’t always talk late into the night, try to make everything fun, or go on grand adventures.  But we support one another.  Entertain each other.  Bear each other’s burdens.  Keep each other’s secrets.  Feed each other’s dreams.  Carry each other’s worries.  Enjoy each other’s company, whether times are exciting or mundane.  We make each other laugh.  We’ve made a home, memories, and a person together.

I hope to bring him up in a way that doesn’t make connecting with others such a challenge for him as it was for me.  But I beat the odds, so I bet he could too, if it came to that.  After all, we gave him a powerful name to empower
him to survive anything life throws at him.  More than that, though, we give him all the love we have.  And that has to be enough.


LJ Idol | Season 11 • Week 12 - Topic: FAILURE
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