I am not always a good friend. In fact, I am often too self absorbed and too busy to give my friends the attention they need.
Sometimes, I’ll realize months have gone by since I even heard their beloved voices over the phone, never mind hugged them close in person.
I hate that. I hate that my life, or maybe just the way I prioritize my life, gets in the way of these very special friendships. I hate it when I cop out with a quick text rather than spending the hour my friends need to feel heard.
It’s something I’m always working on. And probably why I rely so heavily on my online friendships.
After all, the women inside my computer operate the same way. They’ll dash off a direct message in Twitter when they need to vent, or send an email when they need attention. Their voices exist mostly in my head, with rare meetings to give me faces to go with the emotions.
But still, there are those few women I can’t do without. The sisters of my heart. The ones who have known me since I was young, and unsure, and loved me in spite of my jumbled mess of neuroses.
The ones who will still drop everything and come when I need them.
There are fewer of those than there used to be. Some, while still dear, have become almost-strangers. Not just because of my neglect, but also because we’ve just well, grown. In different directions.
That makes me sad.
It’s just life, I guess. But it’s still sad.
That’s why this article on the power of lifelong friendships got to me.
It was sent to me by one of those soul sisters. One of those women who has stuck with me. Who’s been there to wipe my tears through the worst of times, and celebrate with me during the best.
I hope beyond hope that our friendship lasts, well, forever. I want to be 70-something and still know I can call on her. I want to show her pictures of my grandchildren (and see pictures of hers), and gripe about aching bones and aging men. I hope those men are still “silly boys” to us, and that we still feel as young at heart as we did when we met in college.
I know that if it doesn’t, it will be (mostly) my fault.
I know that I need to make the time. Get on the phone. Make the visits.
But I hope she knows that even when I’m all too silent, I’m thinking of her. That she’s got a permanent place in my heart (as do all my other soul sisters).
And she always will.
That’s just the way it is.