I missed an opportunity yesterday as I did not find out until later in the day, after I had published my blog, that it was National Best Friends Day. I had never heard of such a day but I support it fully and I contacted three of my five best friends to wish them a Happy Best Friends day and I will get in touch with the other two a day late.
I cannot stress enough how important friends are in my life and these are relationships that I treasure throughout my life. When they are down, then I like to think that I am there to cheer them up or simply distract them if their demon is too immense to just laugh off, like cancer. What I love about having good friends is the ease with which we can lose hours just talking and giggling, even when we have not physically met for years. That is the mark of a true friend for me, when you can just pick up where you left off and carry on.
A best friend , for me, is someone that you can go nuts with, either being silly or also, ranting and letting off steam, using them as a sounding board and knowing that what you have said will go no further. There is a loyalty in friendship that means that you can have shared secrets that you know are safe, things that you might not dare to voice to anyone else.
I think that I have written before that I am sad that Joshua does not experience friendship in the same way that I do; he does not have the capacity to share secrets and to chatter, but he does have the capacity to choose who he likes to relate to and he makes his preferences very clear. His winning smile would tell anyone who benefits from it that he likes them and he is liable to hug his favourites too. In his class Joshua is working on naming his classmates and this may well be an important step in forging friendships, as there are certainly some young people that he warms to more than others.Previously he has been passive in his friendships and has responded to some ‘motherly’ attention, but now I see that he is starting to be selective and more active in fostering friendships. I know myself, it takes two parties to be trying equally hard to make a successful friendship and I really hope that it is a skill that he can develop, so that he can go on to reap the rich rewards, like I have been able to do in my life.