I wrote on this topic a couple years back on a site that I was a group moderator..Time to pull it off the shelf and give it new life..I’ve got more friends than I can count on my fingers & toes(several times..) ; so this won’t be about NOT having friends. Quite the opposite -N- more than likely not what you expect…
Background: I’ve never been the type of person to dislike someone; based on another’s lack of a recommendation of someone. I’m a hands-on being in most everything I do or am involved IN. Meaning simply I learn & experience by doing things/experiencing myself…It is my way. I don’t believe in ASSociating folks with who they associate with either. Personally, I’ve lived such a colorful life; and I know we can have an array of friends with different /unique personalities and lifestyles. I’ve been known to say my friends can have other friends; and I’m SO cool with that! Never have I been one, not even back in grade school when others were tripping on such things..to feel envy cause a friend spent time with other..friends. Now that I’ve laid that background down; allow me to dig a bit deeper>
“In the FIRST half of life WE are pre-occupied with establishing our identity-climbing/achieving/performing. BUT those concerns will not serve us as we grow older and begin to embark on a further journey..One that involves challenges, mistakes , broader horizons, and necessary suffering that actually SHOCKS us out of our prior comfort zone. Eventually we need to SEE ourselves in a different and more life-GIVING way. This message of “falling down”..is in fact moving UPward..is the most RESISTED and counterintuitive of messages in the world’s religions, including and most especially Christianity”> I hope anyone reading this lets those words sink in for a minute..This direct quote comes from a book I read a while back called ,”Falling Upward” by Richard Rohr. Prior to even reading the book I’d adopted this mode of thinking. I believe in and am living this out loud..a very good friend , that I highly respect, recommended I read the book. How did she know I’d benefit from reading the book? Did she know this was the phase of life I was in? How do people we “connect” with really SEE us? Do our friends view us as we ARE? Do they hear what we are saying , even when we do not say a WORD?
I’ve always had a lot of friends..There are NOT many people I encounter that I can’t find some “commonallity ” with. I can walk into a ROOM of strangers; and within minutes be totally engaged in a conversation. It is my way..folks just seem to be comfy talking to me. A friend of mine once said it is as IF you’ve got a sign on your forehead that says”Talk to ME” Whether I’m in a grocery store, pumping gas, video store(they used to exist..), the movies, the park, work , church, the Mall..I love, really dig! PEOPLE. I adore the many different things about us; that link us together. And yet, I realize that most of the time people only SHOW you a small fraction of who they are! My question that just begs to be asked is..WHY? Fear mayhaps of not being accepted? Not being interesting enough? Could that possibly be why in a social setting folks drink to engage? Ever heard the saying “She/He is the life of the party”? I am comfy being that in my OWN skin. Totally 100% sober..ALL the time. I recently told someone, this is ME..I won’t apologize for who I am. Nor will I CHANGE who I am to conform to what you want me to be…I think often times people want to BELONG so badly; they try to change themselves to fit IN..Shouldn’t it be the opposite though ? IF we are meant to fit; shouldn’t it be that we’ve revealed(to the max of our abilities) who we truly are? Otherwise when the real us or YOU does slip out(and this always happens..) ; there is a sense of disappointment or the connection will fall apart…
WHY ARE PEOPLE SO AFRAID OF SAYING WHAT THEY REALLY FEEL? AFRAID OF HURTING PEOPLE’S FEELINGS..WHEN , HONESTLY, I FIND IT QUITE FAKE! TO LIE TO SOMEONE JUST TO NOT HURT THEM…That is the phase of life I’m in and quite UNapologetically. I will not fake who I am nor what I want to say; to make anyone feel better about themselves. Why should we? Nor do I think anyone else should…I’m not saying purposely hurt people’s feelings..That simply isn’t in my heart to do that. What I’m saying is being anything other than TRUE to one’s self; is FAKE. And I don’t have time for fakeness, B.S.!, or drama. I make that very clear from jump street. I don’t bring it nor do I accept it. And those that I call friends know this ; and they’re REAL also. Like -minded folks hang together & are drawn 2gether..like birds of a feather>
Real Talk..Until recently I’d not met but 1 person in my life; that I just couldn’t find much common ground with. Now I’ve met TWO..in almost 50 yrs of age..and thats saying alot…(only 2!) And there aren’t many people , even folks who just don’t smile alot(which i DO ), that I just don’t care to be AROUND..But this recently happened to me & though it hurt me to step off from them(because I’m a Christian) ; it got to a point that my spirit! felt awful in their company. And I listen to my inner-being, my spirit, more than I listen to any living soul on this planet. Never has my spirit led me wrong, EVER, ..if one can’t be true to themselves..they can fall for anything. Having said all of that “the experience” of having met this person taught me a valuable lesson..WE have to know when to let go of things including people in our lives. It isn’t an easy thing to do sometimes; but it IS essential . Or that is the way I see IT>
When I call someone a friend…That is more than a saying to me. I think the term “friend” is used loosely these days. Friend a person on FB…as IF one can read a person without seeing them. I’m an intuitive person by nature; I feel a person NOT just by “what” they say; but their body language also. My belief is say what you mean & mean what you say. It is what I practice and I don’t accept anything less from those I share time & space with. Actually, truthfully!, IF I feel a person’s actions aren’t in line with what they SAY, they’d not be someone I call friend. Hope that makes as much sense to ya’ll..as it does to me. With true friends we’re never alone in ANY situation. Real talk for real. But also it takes BEing a friend; to have friends. Its a 2 way street. In my heart of hearts every stranger I encounter; could be a potential new friend! That is how easy I’ve had it with getting to know people…and I love IT. I’m a people-loving social butterfly. IF we were meant to survive alone, exist alone!, we’d have been created on islands by ourselves. Or so I believe. Less time is wasted though if we just have the courage; to be who we ARE. Not just a fraction of a person…Don’t sell yourself short. A VERY good friend of mine(My Cali Black Prince) taught me that..The reason why? How do we know the part of US we aren’t revealing; is what another person needs to connect with? >
Every day is a brand NEW start..I leap! literally (gives me a head-rush sometimes but I do…) out of bed feeling that. New people to meet! New people to talk & connect with! New things to learn! New parts of our life experience to share..Life is enriched by our loved ones, our FRIENDS, and our significant others. Make it a beautiful day. I know I will. Until I write/read ya’ll again stay UPlifted & blessed. 4ever sincere, Berna(the 1 & only)