Friday, May 7, 2010

My friends are my estate

“To forget one’s purpose is the commonest form of stupidity.” Nietzsche


Everyone has a purpose, a charge for his or her existence. Many of us know our intentions in the Big Picture. We may not know each and every single aspect of why we walk this Earth, but we have the wherewithal to figure out at least parts of it—if we so care to invest the time to deeply contemplate it. Sometimes I question certain aspects of my purpose; however, I remain steadfast in the majority of my aim.

But within recent months, one part of my charge became compromised when a cherished friendship ended rather abruptly. Friendships, after all, nurture my spirit, for I believe that relationships with others allow us to extend ourselves, to learn more about the human spirit, to grow in a dynamic fashion through the experiences of others.

So when this friendship dissolved, I handled it in a most difficult manner. It took several weeks of conversations, of chance encounters, of emotional emails before we quietly threw in the towel. It was nothing short of devastating, for this was someone with whom I had logged many miles.

We had shared stories of troubled relationships, work complications, growing children, family dysfunctions. And surrounding oneself with people who “get” you is a comforting thing.

Halcyon days they were—until a conflict arose.

The conflict itself doesn’t matter. All that mattered was that my friendship was gone, and the void seemed vast.

But recently, another chance encounter allowed me to try to heal the wound caused by my ego and miscommunication. And I simply said: “I miss you. I really do.”

It sounded corny at the time, I guess, because I kind of ran up and just uttered it.

Yet within a day, I got an email: “Do you want to go to lunch?” And now, a few weeks later, we will try to pick up where we left off as if nothing happened. That is more than fine with me because I highly value my friends, as much as I cherish my family. My friendships greatly define who I am as a woman. They are a part of my purpose, and with this friendship, I forgot that.

Nietzsche would agree: Allowing myself to lose this friend was, indeed, a sign of stupidity. And I don’t associate with stupid. I associate myself with folks who are dynamic, educated, driven, independent, focused--people I get, people who get me.

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