Friendship

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During our lifetime, we may encounter hundreds (or perhaps thousands) of people. Among these people, some of them become our friends while the majority are just supposed to appear in our lives for a moment and then disappear in the crowd.

Consciously or unconsciously, friends may be put into different categories. Casual friends are likely the type of friends we have a looser relationship with. We may see them occasionally, and the conversation is pleasant and flows lightly without necessarily going to the depth.

Good friends or close friends may be those we feel comfortable to have a coffee and a long and deep conversation with. The comfort is often based on mutual trust and understanding over a long period of time.

The border between casual and close friends is sometimes hard to define, and the relationship between two friends is not always fixed and may move from one end to the other over time. The friendship becomes a bit problematic when there is a mismatch between the way we consider how close we are to a particular friend and the way he/she does. We may consider the person a close friend, but for him/her, we are placed in the “casual friend” category, and certainly the opposite may also be true. Too much attention from one side may be seen as inappropriate or even intrusive. A subtle, unspoken agreement of “the right category” seems to be necessary sometimes, but how to figure out whether we are placed in the category we think we are is the same as the one we are actually put in by our friend? Intuition certainly helps, but the intuition is not always reliable. Chemistry might be the right word, but chemistry between two people may also change over time.

I used to have two very good friends and I have known both for ages. I thought our friendships would last a lifetime. Gradually, the connection disappeared. Couples grow apart, the same pattern seems to apply to friends. It is always sad when a beautiful friendship comes to an end, but I think it is just the way life is, I should let it go and be grateful for the time they shared with me. Every friend enters my life for a reason, and they have contributed to make my life a richer and more colourful one.

I often have such a strange thought that when my last day comes, I hope I am able to keep a clear mind no matter how fatigue my body is, and then I will recall all the precious moments of my life and the people who have made my life a better journey. These lovely people would appear in my mind, in front of me, one by one, I would tell them how grateful I am to have them in my life, and how much their kindness, support, thoughtfulness and tolerance have meant to me.

 

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Author: Isabelle

Content writer / editor & Language advisor

19 thoughts on “Friendship”

  1. In a good relationship, there has to be a healthy balance. Each side has to contribute equally. Only then it will be a friendship (or love) for lifetime. 😉

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  2. What’s a good friend? Are we good friends? Why do we have so few good friends? Can we be a good friend if we have tons of good friends?
    Anyway, the friends also give up from us and sometimes we don’t even know why… So we must know that a friendship is for a period of time which length we ignore.

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    1. I think different people have different definitions when it comes to a good friend. I’ve got a few good friends, and a soulmate like friend who I’ve known for ages. We became best friends when we were both 8 years old. They’re the people I can trust at any time, I know whatever happens to me, they’ll always be there for me.

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    2. As everything else in life, you need to take care of your friends.. spend valuable time with them. You need to nourish the friendship. It cannot grow strong and blossom without attention, time and love for one another… If friends separete and forget one another, it was not meat to be…….

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  3. A good friend is the one you can share your secrets with, without being judged… A good friend loves you, accepts you for whom you are, supports and wants the best in life for you.
    Good friends are so hard to find..
    If I had such a good friend, I would be the happiest girl in the world….

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    1. I agree with you. It’s hard to find a true friend. A genuine friendship has to be based on mutual trust and understanding. The chemistry also needs to be right. A true friend is someone you can rely on, someone you can talk to at almost anytime. I guess you’ve already got such a good friend 😊

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  4. For me, shape of friendship has changed over time. Back in school days, friends meant a lot. Before moving to the US, I was always part of a gang which was like a world to me. The bond was very strong. Then I had to leave them and learn to survive as more of an “individual”, building my own personality, having stronger sense of “you and me” than “us”. In my 20s, I was doing fine dealing with friends – close, casual but those friends weren’t as important as they used to. I came to learn other relationships – girls mostly. Then I got married and now family is my priority number one. Same goes to my friends. Work, family matters, physical distances.. they all account for having friendship in a lower place of my ‘relationship list’.
    In hindsight, it felt natural to go through this process. Me and my friends all learned to embrace the change and live with it. But that doesn’t make us ‘not-friend-anymore’. Still friends, but adapted to new environment. That’s it.

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    1. As usual, so good to hear about your reflections on friendship, Ethan! Unlike you, I didn’t belong to a group of friends when I was young, I had a best friend who is still my best friend after all these years. I left her when I was 16, so we’ve been living in two countries with vastly different cultures since then. We rarely see each other but keep the contact online, via WeChat mostly. The unique and close connection between us has never weakened, rather it’s been strengthened by time. I’ve got my family which is important to me, but the friendship with her is equally important, for me she’s a part of my family. We’re different in terms of personalities, interests and preferences, but it doesn’t affect the chemistry between us. The understanding, the care and the support I received from her is invaluable. She’s always available, for me. She’s always ready to give me a hand, at any time and in any circumstances.

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      1. I’m happy that you have such a precious friend. In Korea we have an old saying “if you have two life-long friends, you’ve lived a blessed life.” I think one life-long friend also applies considering the environment of 21st century. 🙂

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    2. You’re right that if we have one or two lifelong friends, we’ve lived a blessed life. Sometimes I think I’m rather greedy, I want many lifelong friends (or as many as possible). It seems that I’m constantly seeking soulmate like friends, it’s not quite realistic. It’s exhausting to have this kind of expectations and constantly look for deep meaningful conversations. Good decent talks with some good friends is pleasant and good enough 😊

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  5. You wrote this so beautifully. It can be such a sad thing when a friendship changes but I’m still try to be happy for what it was at the time. I love your thoughts at the end about having clarity of mind to thank all the people throughout your life one by one.

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    1. Thank you for the lovely words Ellie and I’m so happy that you liked the post. 😊 I’ve long realised that I’m a feeler, a friend once told me that it felt like I came from another planet. I think so differently and feel so deeply sometimes. It can be so intense, but it’s so hard to change. It’s how I am shaped. For me it’s the people or the connections with people that makes my life a more colourful and meaningful one. The achievements are certainly important, but ultimately, it’s the love, understanding, support from the people that makes my life a good journey. Nice to have a chat, thank you.

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      1. Gosh Isabelle, I feel that way as well. Its like I take in so much and others touch me so deeply. I can’t contain it all. That intensity is hard to explain to others isn’t it? Even though it brings sadness at times I would never want to be another way. It also brings great joys and treasured moments that are hard to describe well. No matter how hard I try I don’t think I do them justice. And all of those times that the world tells you are “big”, they never mean as much to me as the lovely simple ones when your soul reaches forth to another and all is well and peaceful. take care Isabelle, suzanne 😌

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      2. Thank you Suzanne 😊 Yes that intensity is hard to explain to people who are less emotionally driven I think. Strangely, sometimes I even enjoy drowning myself in the sadness, it reminds me of how deep and genuine that connection used to be. Yes I lost it but when I think deeply I realise that I didn’t . All those fragments have become a part of my life, and a part of me. I bring them with me and move on. Yes the lovely simple ones, it’s such a deep and overwhelming feeling when all of a sudden, the connection is established, the mutual understanding is there, and when heart meets heart. Thank you 🌸

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      3. You’ve written this beautifully and with so much truth. Sadness has a gift for me too. It makes your life richer doesn’t it. Thank you for sharing. Have a lovely week Isabelle. 😌❤️

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