Saturday, February 13, 2010

on friendship or can't we just give peace a chance?

i had a discussion the other day with bee about friendship. you know how you have friends that bring out certain characteristics in you...humor, bitchiness, glamour (aside: why do we americans spell that with the "u" but not humour?), quirkiness, a desire to drink copious amounts of red wine, or coffee, being cheap, spending too much, being in the zone. and why do certain people rub you the wrong way or the right way, for that matter? what is it about all those Other People? and what is it especially with other WOMEN.

there must be something in the air, because spud just wrote about this too. i do regularly talk to spud and i know she'd been brewing the thoughts for awhile, but i have too. i loved reading hers, because they're like an appendix to the ones i've been having.  tho' they're the energy appendix..because what she describes both gives and, in some cases, takes away, energy. big time.

like spud, i've recently joined a group of women that gives me a great deal of energy. it's my weaving group. they're absolutely marvelous - supportive, interested, enthusiastic, at ease in themselves - exactly the kind of people you want to spend time with. i'm sure there's a sense of competition there somewhere, but i haven't felt it. it undoubtedly hasn't been directed at me as the newbie (who on top of it is a foreigner with a quasi-charming accent). they have been incredibly welcoming and it's been the first place in denmark where i've truly felt welcome. (hmm, and it only took a decade.)

i've been recently transported to those painful, awkward, embarrassing days of high school, where one is anything but supported by the women (or children) one is surrounded by. and it got me thinking about the aspects of oneself that one's friends bring out...inadvertently or consciously. apparently, unbeknownst to myself, i had some kind of "miss king bitch shit" vibe at the end of high school for the person who had been one of my best friends all the way through.  and in turn, when we went to the same college, albeit living in different dorms, she made me want to live up to that moniker, so on valentine's day, when my dorm was selling hershey's kisses with a valentine's message as a fundraiser, i sent her one that said, "dear j***, happy valentine's day! {lip print} love, miss king bitch shit." and in all honestly, to this day, i feel quite avenged of the whole thing. i never really learned her reaction, but i did talk about it to a (highly flatulent) guy from the class ahead of mine who went to the same college and once rode with me (3 hours with a stinky farter guy in a car, not cool, by the way), so i assume she eventually learned it was me.

there are some friends we have who make us super funny. some who we feel totally at ease with sharing our innermost evil and naughty thoughts. and some who make us feel more peaceful and understanding of the world. friends who make us think and those who cause us to turn off our brains completely. there's chemistry of all kinds. and it's very mysterious, but i'm glad it's there. because no matter what kind it is, it does represent some kind of connection and i think we never really can foresee what those will bring...(but spud is right, let's go a little bit easy on one another, eh?)


SH -ic said...

thanks for that .. friendship is a big box to, talk about .. made the last few day strange expierences ..
so I stayed tonight at home and didnt went to a housewarming party .. so it is I do choose more what fits me
take care ,, andrea

kristina - no penny for them said...

yes, friendship is a bit mystery. i've always been puzzled by how come we feel drawn to certain people and not to others, because there doesn't seem to be an apparent pattern. - i have many friends who you could say are quite my opposite. usually i'm the quiet, pensive one, while the others might be daring, spectacularly funny and witty, much more easy-going. go figure. i tend to think that we are easing each other out of our comfort zone a lot of the time and make us more open for other points of view. i think that's something rather precious.

Bron said...

it is so strange, isn't it?!
I find it so unbelievable that a mature, intelligent group of women can turn into the worst sort of high school playground mean girls at something completly innocent - "such-and-such gave me a Look when I said whatever-it-was" and it it ON! But it happens so often!
It really goes to show that those friends around whom we can be just exactly ourselves are to be treasured so dearly! (incidentally, i spent a year in denmark, and it is the one place i have ever felt really at home and welcome- i also think my charming foreign accent helped ;o))

paris parfait said...

Wise words about the mercurial aspects of friendship. The weaving group sounds divine; what a thrill to be involved in such a creative venture!

Gill said...

well said

Char said...

i always try to go a bit easy because i figure most days i need someone to go a bit easy on me.

always excellent advice.

An Open Heart said...

I constantly ponder friendships, not so much why my odd assortment of friends works, but that I have such amazing friends. And, at times I find myself shaking my head at the women who belittle each other behind their backs, and think to myself 'didn't we leave high school'? Your recent posts about reflecting back on high school got me thinking about the people who I thought would be my friends for life and realized, we grow so much when we are in high school and the back biting is so vicious it's a wonder we ever get out alive!

I hope your weaving group continues to give you the good feelings you get from their companionship. said...

As I continue to age, I find myself full of gratitude for the lasting friendships I've developed. (I figure I have enough idiosyncrasies of my own to get on anyone else's case about theirs.)

Elisa @ Globetrotting in Heels said...

There must be something in the air, because I started writing about friends and the "personality of the friendship" a couple of weeks ago - but never finished.

I know what you mean, and I think you are so lucky to have found a supportive, fun group to hang out with.

Sammi said...

Women sure are funny creatures. I sure as hell don't understand them! I know some people make me angry and some people make me excited. I have a boss who makes me laugh just to look at her, because I know something will happen (it is not good when our boss is there because then we're both in trouble)!

mel said...

I love reading your thoughts on this, thanks for writing about it, and sharing it with us - Both these posts, yours and Spud's - very well-timed and insightful.

It IS pretty mysterious! In the last several years it seems like I've culled or limited the very damaging female relationships from my life, pretty subconsciously even. And the ones that are left or are growing/being added are overwhelmingly positive... Actually, as I think more, I take that back, it started out as a VERY conscious move, but it's nice that there's enough distance now that I can think of it as being subconscious - maybe the upkeep of blocking out the bad stuff has become more instinctual (or maybe I have just been lucky). The ones that are still difficult still exist by necessity of work or family, and I do my best to limit the impact of those too. And I'm thinking about what you said about chemistry... So true. One in particular that I must limit has rich friendships with other females, and I'm happy that she can interact in this way with others, even if there is something in our chemistry that makes things difficult in our friendship/family relationship over time. I can enjoy what we do have, but know that it has to have it's limits to remain healthy.

I'm also thinking about this in terms of my relationship with myself. I'm so thankful that I'm able to be (more) patient and forgiving with myself now (if not always as much as I strive to be), and I think this has had a positive impact on my relationships too. Yes, let's go easy on each other (and on ourselves too!!)

I'm writing a book in your comments again!