Thursday, January 22, 2009

blog: Friends Don't Grow On Trees


My mother gave me some advice when I was a teenager and so ridiculously concerned with what my current “friends” were doing, thinking, or saying. At that age my “friends” and their priorities, expectations, and antics could have ruled my life.

She explained that by the time I reached her age (Mom was a ripe old forty-six, or maybe forty-seven at that time) I would more than likely be able to look back on my life and count my true friends on one hand. ON ONE HAND! That sounded so very sad and pathetic to me, and I told her so.

Mom went on to explain that I would indeed meet many people, and they would become acquaintances, but very few would actually become “true friends”.

Shock of shocks, I’m fifty-three and I’ve discovered that Mom was right!!!

My husband is my friend. My sister is my friend, (and always has been, since she came onto the scene when I was only two), and I have one other friend. One true non related friend.

The other night I sat down to watch the popular movie, Mama Mia with my one true friend. Although I was never an Abba fan, nor have I ever much been into musicals, (except for The Sound of Music and Moulin Rouge), at her recommendation I asked my kids to buy me the movie for Christmas. So we made ourselves comfy and watched Meryl Streep, Christine Baranski, (the “real” mom from Birdcage), and Julie Walters play “true friends”, singing and dancing their way merrily across the screen. How refreshing it was, to watch a movie where the main character was a middle-aged woman! And how refreshing to see that main character and her friends depicted as vibrant, relevant, fun women!

No, I am not on Universal Pictures payroll! I just enjoyed watching Mama Mia with my friend. It was very entertaining.

I cried because I related to the mother preparing to watch her daughter go on to live her own life, (having planned and thrown a wedding for our daughter in our backyard not long ago), and now that my daughter is expecting a daughter, well…you get the picture, Kleenex, tears, sniff, sniff.

My “true friend” cried because her good friend, (a friend she’d palled around with when Abba was popular, back when they wore clothing very much like the outfits the three women in the movie wear when they’re recreating the singing trio they once were), had passed away a short time ago. Well…you get the picture, Kleenex, tears, sniff, sniff.

So, go figure, Mom had it right. By the time you reach a certain age many people come and go, some fall away because we drift apart, some fall away because their time on this earth has come to an end, (Mom is gone), so realize this, a friend is a valuable asset. If you have one, consider yourself fortunate. Call that friend today, or better yet, go see them. You won’t be sorry.

All Rights Reserved. © 2009 by Elizabeth Bradley.


PopArtDiva said...

Yes, we often forget to tell our friends what they mean to us and, then, in the blink of an eye, they are gone and we have lost the opportunity.

At my age I have realized how vital my true friends are to my life - how they enrich it, invigorate it, bring me joy and a feeling of belonging. I have learned to share this feeling with them as I've matured.

Your post has reminded me to, yet again, keep vigilant on the appreciation of those friends who make my life worth living.

ILM of BettyMae and all those friends we had the time of our lives with:

You are the dancing queen
Young and sweet
Only seventeen
Dancing queen
Feel the beat from the tambourine
You can dance
You can jive
Having the time of your life
See that girl
Watch that scene
Diggin' the dancing queen

jodi said...

What a lovely post. As bizarre or trite as this might sound, I actually am blessing Facebook these days. I have found a number of people who I'd lost touch with over the years via Facebook. We moved a great deal while I was growing up, around 4 provinces, and of course university and marriage and more moves help to muddy the lines of communication. It's easy to send a quick note to people, and I tend to do that rrather than telephone, only because I am on the phone a great deal during the day in my work as a writer, so I get tired of it by day's end.

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