It was E-Learning Day on Wednesday and it was a nest of elementary, middle school and a few high school kids thrown in for laughs. A cluster of middle school girls had taken up residence near the desk. You see Emily considered Sara her best friend and Sara considered Madison her best friend but said Emily was her best friend too. Emily being quite logical said that Sara could not have two best friends as best is BEST. Much angst came after that. Thankfully, much was resolved over peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

Going to be honest, at that age, I was on Emily’s side. Best was best and you only got one. I, too, was quite the logical person. Age and wisdom have added clarity (as it tends to do on many topics) to the best friend issue for me.

I’m am amazingly fortunate. I have more than a handful of friends I could call and say, I need help and they would say, ok I will be there. And that is all it would take. I could ask for a cup of sugar, place to stay or a kidney. But I would get the same response. All best friends in my book with no ranking or hierarchy. Now granted I might call Friend K for this thing and Friend M for that thing, but all Besties.

To me that is what makes it the best friend, the unconditional yeah let me help or how can I help. But it is smaller things too. It is when they look at you and say what is wrong and really want to know. It is some dippy thing they picked up for a quarter in a store on vacation that they knew would make you laugh. It is all the guards let down and each person sees the real you underneath. It is awesome and scary.

And that is what makes it so hard when friendships end. And they do. Most frequently, I find without fireworks or fanfare. It is a drifting or a just can’t find the time to get together. I have one friendship that has shifted from the best to genuinely pleased when I see the person but the magical connection is gone. And I have tried to pin point it and reconnect a few times. But it just has run its course. That is hard. I try to focus on the good memories and the value that the relationship has brought to my life, but it is hard.

This time of year it is easy to get caught up in the EVERYTHING that is the season. To focus too hard on those that are missing and not enjoying enough those that are in our day to day lives making it better (be it those that live in your house or deliver your mail or hand you your coffee). Focus on those things today, the things that make us what we are and give someone an extra smile today. They probably need it.



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