Wednesday, December 12, 2012

F is for Friendship

Every now and then I come across a book that I cannot put down. A book that I randomly grab off the shelf at the library as I am dashing through the adult section chasing the boys into the maze of children's books. I saw Anna Quindlen's new book Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake, sitting on the shelf and I tossed it into my bag. It is a newly published book so I cannot renew it past the two week loan period; that was four weeks ago. I am sure the library fine will cost more than the $30.00 hardback copy at Barnes and Noble. After reading her new book I felt compelled to write about a particular chapter she wrote entitled Friends.

Quindlen writes, "The older we get, the more we understand that the women who know and love us- and love us despite what they know about us- are the joists that hold up the house of our existence. Everything depends on them. I am not sure I would have said that at an earlier time of my life. To be a good friend and to appreciate the value of friendship requires honesty and concentration. It took a long time for the two to come together for me as an adult."

Her honesty and rawness about friendship touched me in so many ways. She writes "Real friends offer both hard truths and soft landings and realize that it's sometimes more important to be nice than to be honest." She speaks to girlfriends flowing in and out of our lives paralleling where we are on our own journey. We have friends we traveled through our childhood and the awkward teenage years with, the college friends in our twenties in which we grew to piece together our identities, the friends we shared the journey and secrets of motherhood, marriage and middle age, and friends that float in and out at random moments, bringing each other something our souls desired at that point in our lives. 

"And in the end we wind up with the friends who really stick. Being female, we pride ourselves on doing for them, on listening to them complain or cry, on showing up with a cake or a casserole and taking charge when disaster strikes. But the measure of our real friends, our closest friends, is that we let them do the same for us. We've been taking charge for decades; to let go, to take help instead of charge, is the break point of the friendship." ~ Quindlen

Reading this chapter again today, I felt very grateful for my friends; for every woman who at some point in my life has taught me a little more about myself and helped me to grow into the person I am today. 

Love & Light,

Nolan's best buddy, Lilah Grace, came over to play.

This is Lilah Grace's neat paint palette (above) and Nolan's messy paint palette (below).

The best part was when Nolan was done with his painting (below), Lilah Grace walked over and said, "Oh Nolan, that is just beautiful. You are such a great painter Nolan, I love it." I squeezed her with a giant hug for being such a good friend.

A few leftover treat photos.

The best part.

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