I woke up this morning to the sound of my youngest daughter giggling with one of her best friends post-sleep-over. The girls are 7 years old, they have known each other since they were 18 months old, and while they no longer go to school together, they pick up right where they left off whenever they see each other. It got me thinking about what it means to have a good friend, and I realized just how lucky I am to be surrounded by my friends- both physically and emotionally.

Because a good friend will tell you what you need to hear, not just what you want to hear. They will talk with you honestly about what they think and they will cherish your opinion as well. They will re-hash ideas and problems and issues over and over with you, and they will tell you when it's time to stop re-hashing and move on. A good friend will come see you both because you want them there and because you need them to be there- even if you don't realize it at the time. A friend is someone who comes in your life and stays in your life for a short time or for forever, and however long they stay is really just perfect.

Because while friends may judge each other, it's not done maliciously, it's done so that we can be our best selves; and it's our best selves that our friends see in us. They see our potential, they see our foibles, they see our best characteristics and our worst and they love and accept us just the same. Friends will stand by your side and push you forward and hold you back; they help us see the forest for the trees, they assure us there is a light at the end of this dark tunnel, they stand by our side and hold our hand through the bad times and dance and sing and jump for joy at the best times.

We have childhood friends and work friends and college friends and grad school friends; we have friends because of our children and friends in spite our children; we have family who are also friends and friends who are our family; we have friends who are with us in spirit and friends who live next door. And all of these friends, every one of them, reminds us of who we once were, who we are today and who we can become, if only we see ourselves as they do: as the truest, most honest, most raw and delightfully perfect version of ourselves. We have friends and we are loved and we are all, all of us, truly blessed.

After all, this is the life.


  1. Allison,
    Treasure your friendships. I am losing my oldest, bestest friend to dementia.

  2. Oh Linda, I am so sorry. I am reminded this holiday season of how grateful I am to have old friends and new, to be surrounded physically or emotionally by friends I cherish. Thinking of you and your bestest friend- and sending you both thoughts of love and strength.


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