April 25, 2014

Choosing friends

A few weeks ago my son asked me to explain how I choose my friends. After taking a moment to think about it, I decided to ask him how he chooses his friends.

“Well I like kids that like the same games I like. I like fun kids and kids that make me laugh.” He began saying.

He continued on, “I like kids that are nice to me, not like Lauren. Remember mom she’s the girl that scratched me on my leg and made it bleed.”

I nodded my head indicating that I remembered who Lauren is.

“I like kids that are smart. Isabelle she’s not that smart and she asks too many questions. Every minute I have to explain everything to her. She gets on my nerves when I tell her something and then I have to tell her again because she doesn’t remember.”

I chuckled to myself at his last statement. I thought about the gazillion times I’ve had to repeat myself to him because he didn’t listen. We talked about friendships and I shared with him what makes a true friend in my opinion.

It’s interesting how my friendships have evolved over the years. What I value in friendships today, isn’t what I valued in friendships in the past. I can understand that at my son’s age that he would want friends that are fun, funny, smart and nice. For him, life is about all things entertaining and enjoyable. While I want him to know the true depth of friendship, I realize for now he doesn’t need the profoundness that genuine friendships provide. He is entitled to his joie de vie and his innocent approach to friendships because for the time being what true friendship supplies is coming from his family.

I know his friendships will evolve over time. There will come a day when he realizes friendships aren’t simply about fun and games, but about values and beliefs. His friendships won’t be so self-centered, but instead will be a special balance of giving and receiving. He’ll understand that friends don’t have to agree on everything that is important to each individual person. But instead, friends understand that what they do agree upon, matters the most in the friendship.

I’ve learned over the years I don’t choose my friends. My friends grew out of circumstances, chance meetings and mutual connections. Some of my friends I wouldn’t have ever imagined would have become my friends had I had the ability to look into the future. I probably would have laughed at destiny had she told me down the road our paths would cross in a new way and a friendship would be born. What I’ve come to realize is the element that has made friendships rise out of ashes and soul mates out of odd circumstances is unconditional people. Open minded people. Nonjudgmental people. I have friends from all walks of life – religious, non religious, Christian, Muslim, agnostic, gay, straight, etc. and all the colors in between. They know where I stand in my belief system. I know where they stand in their belief system. I respect that I can’t change them and they respect that they can’t change me. We all appreciate that we can be real, honest and transparent without overpowering our friendship with our own individualized dogma.

Soon, very soon, my son will find himself having these kinds of friendships and what he has now will pale in comparison. Have you found that your friendships have evolved over time? What makes a true friend in your opinion?

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Ana Gazawi

Ana Gazawi

Single mom of two boys trying to live a greenier, crunchier life. Lover of life and all things that bring good people, great conversation, and lasting memories together.

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Ana Gazawi About Ana Gazawi

Single mom of two boys trying to live a greenier, crunchier life. Lover of life and all things that bring good people, great conversation, and lasting memories together.

  • http://teanhoneybread.blogspot.com T.Allen-Mercado

    My friendships are…well, let me just speak about the main one, the friendship I have with my husband. Joseph and I have grown and evolved in ways I couldn’t imagine when we embarked on this friendship in our teens. We have grown apart in ways, taken different roads at times, but always come back to the heart’s center. For me that is it in a nutshell, the best friends-true friends have a meeting place in the heart’s center where we retreat, recharge and regroup from the rest of the world, and even ourselves in peace, openness acceptance and forgiveness.

  • Pingback: Friendship 101 | Moms of Hue

  • http://jamericanspice.blogspot.com JamericanSpice

    You say it so well about your son’s friendships now in this stage of his life. That is what I think too and don’t worry my son too much with the profoundness of it all.

    He tells me about his friends all the time and we have discussions and it’s always interesting to hear his take on the matter.

    I hope as he gets mature, he’ll choose wisely and still not limit himself.