National Friendship Day: Here Is What I Learned About Being a Friend

It’s National Friendship Day!

I always love these made up days because it gives me new content and time to reflect on said “holiday”. 

Let’s talk about the ever-evolving friendship cycle. 

Photo by  Hian Oliveira  on  Unsplash

We get to choose our friends. Many of our friends are closer than family and understand us better than we know ourselves. We can give our friends a simple look and they will know exactly what we’re thinking. They never forget birthdays. They’re our travel buddy when Southwest is having a sale, our gossip partner when The Shade Room posts and deletes, our mirror when we are out of line, our counselor when we need advice and our pastor when we need encouragement in the Word. Our friends are our everything but when the relationship ends we need to learn how to move on.

I’m not a person who has tons of friends. Primarily because I’m an introvert and secondly because I’m easily annoyed with and by people. For those reasons, the few friends that I do have I acquired them during important stages in my life like in high school and college, at my first real job after moving across the country, after becoming a wife and after becoming a mother. I value those friendships because those people were there when I needed them although at the time I didn’t know I needed them.

They were fruitful during that season.

Photo by  Clarke Sanders  on  Unsplash

A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of crossing an item of my bucket list. I was so excited about what was to come that I packed my suitcase almost a month in advance. The thirst was real! The crew was assembled and everything was copasetic until someone decided to address the elephant in the room. I sat and watched in horror as two friends went back and forth with each other about “being a good friend.” Hearing the phrase sparked up feelings of discomfort for me because it reminded me of a personal situation where I was accused of that exact infraction. I had to walk away from that friendship because I don’t want anyone feeling like I’m a burden on them. My only hope was that the person didn’t unsubscribe to my blog (J/K). 

The argument between the two kept escalating and it seemed like the two were not hearing each other. They were at an impasse. The relationship was clearly over and probably had been for some time but neither wanted to be the one to end it. I’ve been in positions like that. It doesn’t feel good but neither does voluntarily moving forward in a toxic relationship.  As a viewer to the madness I could see that both were hurting and being devalued by the other. To be honest, I don’t even know where the friendship stands or lack thereof. 

Today on National Friendship Day make a decision to be good to your friends both old and new. Conversely, if there are friendships that are no longer friendly and they need to end—end them amicably. Again, our friends are there for us during their season.

Be grateful that you had their friendship during the time but be courageous enough to move own.

Just as a winter jacket is perfect in December, it’s not conducive to your lifestyle in June (unless you live in Chicago). Don’t feel like you need to be with someone because you’ve known them forever.

It’s perfectly fine to make room in your life for something new. In turn, you do the same thing for that person.

When relationships stop bring your happiness and comfort you have to move on. I’m not saying cancel a person because of one little argument because that childish. However, once you notice a pattern or behavior change its time to make better decisions for your life. If the friendship is meant to be—it will be but don’t force it.

 Please share this post with three friends + check out my past post, How to Be a Good Friend.

Love + Light

Ar’Sheill Monsanto