Do you have people in your life whose friendship you value above others? What makes their friendship so important to you?
I have several friends that are so significant to me that I would not want to face this world without them. One has been my friend almost my entire life. Others have become valued treasures later but are just as precious. What makes someone a friend?
For me, it is someone, regardless of gender, age, race (or anything else!), whose values, philosophies, and opinions align in some way with mine. Yet, even with my best friends, we do not always see eye to eye on every subject. We sometimes debate, or discuss, or flatly disagree with each other about certain things. But I respect their right to have their own opinions, as they respect mine, because we all know those beliefs were well thought out and not rashly made.
In my new book, The Teacher Learns Love, the main character, Caitlin, finds long-lasting friendships with the most unlikely people. Caitlin has gone to teach on the Navajo Indian Reservation and knows no one there. But she and Susan, a teacher with whom she works and with whom she seems to have so little in common, somehow, seem to clique right away. Caitlin also discovers an older mentor who helps her maneuver her way through all the unfamiliarity of a new place and culture because she, herself, had come to the reservation to teach and had stayed to make it her home.
Friendships sometimes come to us when we least expect them but always, I believe, when we need them the most. Some friendships are meant to last a lifetime and others for only a short while. How ever long your relationships last with certain people, value that time. I firmly believe it has a purpose. Open your eyes and your heart and embrace it. Learn from it. Treasure it. It may not last forever.
What are the qualities you look for in a friend? What do you do to let your friends know how much you appreciate them?