Monday, September 08, 2008
No friends - many friends??
In my rambling reflections of the past few days, I penciled in a thought - "no friends" then "many friends." What did that mean to me when I said it? What did that mean to you when you read it, particularly if you consider yourself one of my friends?
I think in the deepest fear and yearning for a light, one can look, and often does, to the darkness before quickly shedding light on the ridiculous that has just passed through one's mind.
In stating, "no friends" I think I reflected that dark fear of being alone. Alone in the house, alone in the adventure, alone in the world. Does one become that way naturally with no fault or action of one's own or does one court the being or state of "no friends?" Some of you would say, once more as I said to myself, "how ridiculous for you to even think that!" But just your saying it would not erase the feeling would it?
In reflection, I know that I have many friends, but I also know that life becomes cluttered with so many distractions that one's friendships can lie fallow for a while. Like a field, like a garden, like an orchid - it can be ignored for a while, it will live, it will survive, but will it prosper? I don't think so.
Many friends have reached out to me in the past 10 days. Some I expected, some I did not. A new friendship was presented in very plain terms to me from an unexpected source. How dear a cup of coffee and a chat in a local coffee house. I am grateful for my old friends, my high school chums - so distant in time from each other yet reaching out to each other like kids on Facebook, laughing at the silly pictures of our youth and the lined faces that we now see in ourselves and each other. Friends in the neighborhood who brought us the soup laced with cheese (like arsenic to my spouse - lactose allergy) who regretted they'd forgotten or never known that detail about him. That laugh brought us new friendship across a crockpot! The dear, dear friends who dared not even leave the car but to drop their gifts at the door for fear they would "disturb" us - how could they think such a thing - their gifts and their love only disturbed our throats by the lumps that appeared there over their thoughtfulness. The cards, the tears, the thanksgiving. The friends that we are yearning to know better but fear an intrusion into their lives, yes, they came to us with no invitation other than to offer their hearts and help! How silly we humans are that we don't nurture our friends more than we do. They are such treasures and gifts of God's love - messengers albeit without wings!