Jan at Rev Gals gave us this prompt for the Friday Five:
Ever since I found out I could be the hostess for the third Friday Five of each month, I have not been able to get the thought of friends out of my mind. Being an only child (all growed up) who moved around a lot in my lifetime, friends have always been very important to me. As Ralph Waldo Emerson once wrote: "The way to have a friend is to be a friend."
So today let's write about the different kinds of friends we have, like childhood friends, lost friends, tennis friends, work friends, and the list goes on. List 5 different types of friends you have had in your life and what they were/are like.
As a bonus, put a link to a new (to you) blogging friend and introduce us!
Growing up friends - Life before college. Ugh. It was a struggling time for me, and while I had a few close friends at different points of life between years 7-18, overall I don't look back on those years a friend-filled. I was awkward and felt completley un-known by almost anyone. I wanted to be someone different because I didn't see how who I was fit in anywhere. Again, there were key people at key times that made life not only bearable, but joyful, but I don't have those kinds of memories you read about with big groups of friends claiming "this is the time of our lives." Does anyone or is that all just in the movies and books? The friends I did have -
1. A high school boyfriend for several years who was just perfect for then; a relationship I will never regret
2. An on-again/off-again best friend (?) the entire time I was growing up; even when we were off-again I knew I could call in the middle of the night if need be
3. A friend a few years younger, but on the same page spiritually; in different ways we probably ended up mentoring each other at the same time
College Friends - These are IT for me. The girls I met on my freshman hall that stuck together for 4 years and beyond. These friends knew me as I wanted and needed to be known. They still do. With a clean slate I started college just being me without all the baggage that growing up together brings. When I discerned in my senior year that I was going to seminary, these were the folks in my life (family and friends included) I had no fear telling. I have always hated that I am the one who lives the farthest from the group now that we are grown. I think we all needed each other, but I don't think they will ever understand how much I needed them. They had those friendships of movies and books in high school.
Seminary Friends - Those years are strange ones! I think I was pretty insecure in seminary. Everyone seemed more "spiritual." I used to be able to rely on book smarts, but in seminary a segment of my peers seemed to look down on that. When I starte I was one of the youngest in the school, which I loved, but by the time I graduated there were all sorts of 20-somethings, a group I just didn't fit in with, but felt lumped together with. The ones I still call friends always saw me as a pastor even when I didn't. I didn't feel like I needed to hide my non-spiritual spirituality from them. We learned were able to get behind the seminary-masks that we all wore and just be friends, not future-pastors.
Playgroup Friends - The ladies and babies (now preschoolers) my daughter and I met when she was a few weeks old. We found each other at a breastfeeding support group. They were the first people I met in the town of my first call that weren't related to the church or my ministry, and it took me 3 years to do that. I wasn't anyone's pastor and it was a glorious group to be a part of. I've moved away now, but we all still keep in touch through various electronic means, and we gather when I visit. DEFINITELY the first place I go with mom and family questions and struggles. Without a doubt. There are a great number of women of faith and depth in this group, so I can be a mom living with faith instead of a pastor among them, and that is a great thing to be.
Neighborhood Friends - So far there is really just one of these families, but it is one of God's greatest gifts to me in our new town. We moved here a year ago to a house across the street from a family with 4 kids, the youngest two the same ages as our two. I have HUGE amounts of joy and satisfaction when I send my kids across the street to play or theirs come to our backyard. We get together for impromptu picnics and marshmallow toasting. We have keys to each other's houses and share cat-care duties when we go on vacations. Without notice we can leave a kid or two with the other family if we need to make a quick run to the grocery store. These are the adult friendships of dreams. The other mom and I have made plans to meet with lawn chairs in the street (we live at a dead-end) at 9:30 p.m. every Friday night this summer with a bottle (or two) of wine). This is good stuff!!!
Bonus - Graceful Like a Chicken" - a blog about Well, this isn't someone new to me. In fact, she fits as one of the "Growing Up Friends." In fact, again, she's one of the friends mentioned! Anyway, what's new to me about her is this blog I've been following for a while now, over a year, I guess, and the way we are moving from "Growing Up Friends" to being something closer to "Neighborhood Friends." We don't actually live in the same neighborhood, but by some twist of fate we two former Florida girls have ended about 45 minutes apart in the "tundra." It's fun to share an adult friendship now that we both have kids. We talk a lot of faith and theology; she grew up in a family rich in Methodism and full of pastors. I think she has some pastoral tendencies and leanings herself. We're starting to talk about that, too! Here's what she says about the blog:
"...because what the world needs now is yet another blog ...because my fourth baby doesn't take up the time between 3 a.m. and 3:36 a.m....and it MUST BE FILLED! ...because I want to try out my new superhero persona: THE ENABLER-seeking to help people of all kinds procrastinate their lives away ...because this has very little to do with chickens and everything to do with grace!"