I had an experience that made me appreciate my friends and family even more. The experience isn't what's important... but the feeling I got from it. I had a night that made me realize why I have and hold my friends. I realized why I am a great friend to those who I choose to be one to, and more importantly, I realized just what they bring into my life.
I have a motley collection of friends from various places in life, work, school, the neighborhood I grew up in, theatre, the neighborhood I live in now... I don't always stay in touch as much as I'd like, or do as many things together as I'd like, but I keep them in a special place in my heart always. Someone recently said something about me, without exactly knowing that I would find out what they said. "She's always been better to others than herself." I find that to be the unvarnished truth. Last night I became highly self-aware of just how true this is.
I'd like my friends, all of them, the real ones, the internet ones, the family friends, the old ones and the new ones to know one thing. If you don't know it already, you aren't paying attention. If I count you as a friend, I will take a bullet for you. I will do anything in my power to make sure you are happy even on your darkest day. If I get mad at you, it won't last. I don't like to see one of my friends upset for a long period of time so anger is fleeting with me.
I'm not a perfect person by any means. If someone wrongs one of my friends, I take it personally. If someone talks negatively about someone I like, I'll disown that person from my life in a heartbeat. I don't like to watch people treat other people like shit so, the ones that do, are the ones that go in the dislike pile. When you get there, know this. You won't know that you're there, I'll smile and chat with you and you'll think everything is groovy. What will happen is that selfless girl who would run through a field of stinging nettles barefoot to stop you from crossing the same field will cease to exist in your world. I will be polite and nice and sweet, but I will not be what I am to my true friends. If there is one truth it's that I'm loyal, like any good bitch should be.
So, last night I saw of myself what other people see. I was moved by it. Becoming self aware is really weird. I'm glad it happened. However, part of me is kinda frightened at the whole prospect of living up to who I am. Now that I am aware of it, I hope I don't lose it.
The importance of friends is this:
The ones that you love help you grow as a person. The ones that piss you off help you grow as a person too, probably moreso. There are those people in your life that serve one purpose, to make you appreciate the ones that make you happy, make you think, bring you joy, and help your spirit grow. Even assholes have an importance in your life, they are like the sea to the sky - reflecting a difference that even though the sky and the sea are vastly different, occasionally the sky will spill the sea back into itself.
Hold fast to your friends. Keep the good, the bad, the amazing, and the not-so-amazing. Every interaction with them will expand your soul. Afterall, the soul is the only reason we exist.