I don’t have many friends, but the ones I do have are keepers for life.
Oh, I have friends on Facebook, and followers on Twitter and Pinterest. People, even follow this blog ( thanks so much for doing so!) But real honest to goodness, give you a kidney if you needed it friends are few and far between.
But that’s okay. Like I said, the one’s I have are keepers.
As an only child, I grew up mostly alone. Parents at work all day and into the evening, I spent a great deal of time at the local library after school. The head librarian knew more about me than my family did. Books became my true friends. Trixie Beldon, Nancy Drew, even Miss Marple where the people I shared my life with. It sounds sad, but it wasn’t. I loved being in the library surrounded by words. It was so much better than being in school surrounded by bullies who taunted and tortured me verbally because I looked different, was different, had a different last name than my mother ( this was the 60′ and 70’s – not too many divorces yet among the populous). Books were my friends, their characters my peers and teachers.
Okay, so maybe it was a little sad, but believe me, I never felt like it was.
When I got older and my outer shell of protection hardened, it was easier. I was still different than most, but I started to discover people who were similar in their own differences to me. Book readers; smart kids; creative kids. Kids who didn’t care what people thought about them. Kids who would stand up for me, and me for them, against the bullies and clique’y kids. All the knowledge I’d gleaned from those books I’d been surrounded with helped me discover the person I truly was. The kid on the inside who lived on the outside and wanted nothing else but to belong.
In a word, me.
No longer did I wait until people sought me out – I started pursuing them. I started actually making friends, putting myself out there and trusting that I wouldn’t get hurt. And if I did, well, then, I’d chalk it up to life experience.
I’m still that same kid on the inside. Still know I’m different from most, think differently than the norm. But the people who are close to me now, the ones who truly are friends in every sense of the word, are the ones who are most precious to me. They share my highs and my lows, give me strength and receive it from me when they need it, and they celebrate the person I am, differences and all.
It’s been said that words have power. My power comes from within, but also from my friends. And they make me feel very powerful indeed.