Kindness, Life Lessons, Wellbeing

My (deep) thoughts on Friendship

 

Freelance Photographer - Hannah Millerick

Contrary to the very authoritative title of this post, I do not consider myself a particularly good friend, at times. The topic is never far from my mind though, and I think it was when I approached the big 4-0 that I finally let go of my guilt and expectations around friendship. I had been holding onto so much angst about the role I had played in lost friendships, I was questioning myself about doing enough for the friends in my life now and I was a little disillusioned about the concept of friendship in general.

I have been a bad friend, I have been that person who takes a week to return a call and who cancels at the last minute. I have also been that person who would jump in the car at any hour of the night just to listen, or to stay up all night making meals for a friend in need. The friends I had in my teens are some of my nearest and dearest now, we may not see each other for many months yet the moment we arrive at our regular weekends away our kindred connections are always the same. The joy that these friendships bring to my life is immeasurable.

Since connecting with so many like minded souls online through my blogging, I have been drawn to the organic and deeply spiritual friendships of women such as Tara Bliss, Rachel Macdonald and Melissa Ambrosini .. especially through their collective and public grieving at the loss of their soul sister Jess Ainscough recently. If you have a read of these two tributes shared by Tara and Melissa, you will get a sense of what friendship means to me.

It is the ability to sit with each other in the darkest moments, as well as truly celebrate during the good times. In the past I struggled with the real depths of friendship, my 20’s were spent caring for my Mother and completely shutting myself off from any depths at all. The damage that I did to any friendships during that time was immense and somewhat out of my control. I was 28 when my Mother died and it was only then that I finally asked for help and started to venture into acknowledging my post traumatic stress, anxiety, depression, harmful addictions and self loathing.

As I slowly began to embrace the healing process into my 30’s, discovered the importance of self love and embraced self development, friendships dropped away as I became a little too honest and real at times. I honestly believe though that losing anything in life is a part of what it means to love, and to accept that letting go is OK at times, and often necessary.

It has been more than half of my life now affected by trauma and the scars that have manifested as mental illness. I have few regrets, I know that I was only doing the best that I could possibly do in any given moment. This acceptance has taken time, and it has been a huge part of my outlook on friendship. It really is only when we accept ourselves wholeheartedly that we can attract or deeply connect with our lifelong kindred spirits, those souls who are truly meant to share the intimate details of our lives and our hearts.

Friendship to me is about paying attention, devoting time and unconditional love to a small number of people who truly deserve you. It is not about how many “friends” you have on Facebook, or how many events you are invited to. It is so much more than these things. It is intimate and real and precious. It lights you up and it also gives you the most incredible sense of being home, being loved and never being alone.

I would love to hear if you share any of my thoughts on friendship?

Previous Post Next Post

You Might Also Like

10 Comments

  • Reply michaowlwise March 18, 2015 at 6:29 am

    Hey, Lisa. I just saw your response on fb and I had to take a look. I love your page.. it’s friggin gorgeous. And this post was a good one… I have been questioning myself on this, too. Actually, just last night I was messaging my best friend, that I hadn’t seen in YEARS and wondering why it is that we can go months without even messaging each other but the minute we talk it is back to normal..
    It’s weird. I kinda think best friends are just the ones you don’t feel like you have to be anything special to. Youre feel comfortable telling them your pitfalls and being a dorky, weird human in front of them. and mostly you feel ok with failing in front of them. I think that’s the mark of my friendships.. if I can totally fail or bomb something and tell you all about it without feeling like you are gonna get an ego off my failure.

  • Reply Fleur - Our Urban Box March 15, 2015 at 10:03 pm

    Love this post Lisa. So honest and beautifully written as always. Its only been the last few years where I have had to let go of negative friendships. They were toxic!! I do believe some friends are for life and some are just for a short while. For me it is definitely about quality no quantity xx

  • Reply erinmadethis March 15, 2015 at 11:30 am

    Beautiful posts Lisa.

    I feel really lucky that in my 20’s I truly know the meaning of friendship. I have absolutely no hesitations in saying I have the greatest friends possible. This was reveled to me through two pretty traumatic experiences – the diagnosis of my Dad and the destruction of the longest friendship I had known.

    To me, friendship is expectation-less, full of unconditional support and love, compassion and no judgement. We don’t get it right all the time, but when we don’t we connect, discuss, learn and move on.

    And yes, like you said, when I am with my friends, I am home. xx

    • Reply admin March 15, 2015 at 3:05 pm

      It is such a blessing isn’t it Erin?
      Especially at times like those that you have experienced xx

  • Reply Sammie @ The Annoyed Thyroid March 15, 2015 at 11:06 am

    Oh yes, that’s beautiful. I think you summed it up perfectly with the quote “it is intimate and real and precious. It lights you up and it also gives you the most incredible sense of being home, being loved and never being alone.” I totally agree. When it comes to friendship, it’s about quality not quantity.

    • Reply admin March 15, 2015 at 3:06 pm

      Definitely agree that it is about quality Sammie xx

  • Reply Jenni from Styling Curvy March 15, 2015 at 10:16 am

    Lisa, this post is all shades of beautiful. In life we have all levels of friendship for all different reasons but at the end of the day it’s those who are connected, likeminded and present that truly are deserving of time. I learned ALOT about friendship when I went through treatment and beyond. Some of it soul lifting and some heartbreaking, I think when we are centred we attract those who are meant to be in our lives and for all the right reasons x

    • Reply admin March 15, 2015 at 3:07 pm

      Jen, thank you!
      I LOVE that you felt this way – this post is all shades of beautiful! xx

  • Reply Kirstie Fitzgerald March 13, 2015 at 8:10 pm

    Yes, oh yes, beautiful one. You summed up how I feel just perfectly. I wish I lived closer to you xxx

    • Reply admin March 14, 2015 at 8:38 pm

      OH Kirstie I wish you lived closer too xx

    Your words matter, I would love to hear your thoughts xx