Artwork by SKK

Friend…such a simple word and yet there is a ton of power behind its simplicity.

What is a friend? There is no one definition of what a friend is or how they should act. Friends don’t always have to be there for you; listen to you; get along with you; like the same things as you; or really have to be or do anything. A friend could be a friend because of a shared experience; a common interest; a chance encounter; a travel companion; a fellow mom or dad; a colleague; a schoolmate; or for no reason at all.

I look back on my life and see a life rich with friends. Some I knew only for a very short time and some I’ve known all my life. Some that I am sorry are not around more and some that I need to call more. I have felt the pain of friends lost because of distance, or a wrong word said, and even because of death.

But what is at the heart of this friendship thing? We strive with all our power to make friends as children. Sadly too many kids without friends or feeling friend-less are driven to killing themselves, or hurting themselves or others because they lack that necessary ingredient in their lives…a friend. We are told in old age that keeping our friendships will help us live longer.

Does the government know how powerful this friend stuff is – coloring our lives, making us do things counter to common sense, extending our lives….??? Pretty soon they will bottle it up and use it as a weapon of war if we aren’t careful. I can just imagine the government opening up a canister of the latest bio-terrorist chemical called “No-Friend”, and the oldest generals on the enemy side start to age immediately, the young kids on the line drop their weapons, crumble up in a corner and start to cry.

There is no one definition of a friend and what they can do for you or be for you. You have to take each friend as they are when they step into your life, and again when they step out of it. Do not beat yourself up if you do not stay friends or you can’t always stay in touch. I have done this and it doesn’t fix the past it only hurts the present.

In the end that friend was there for a reason. Friends good and bad help put color in our lives. Some stay and become a permanent background color and others just drop a spot of color here and a dash of color there. It is our job to let them in and let them color our life for the time they are to be part of it. The color they left on your canvas will always be a part of you, and as other colors get added along the timeline of life, the picture begins to make sense and become more beautiful.

Thank you to all the friends who have added color to my life.


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