This is a bit of a Part II to my previous post: Unicorn: Adult Best Friendships.
I may be speaking from a place of bitter sadness, or this could just be a reality we refuse to accept or speak of.
There are a ridiculous amount of quotes out there these days. I am usually that annoying person who loves quotes, posts quotes, and quotes quotes. But the older I get, the more critical I have become of everything around me, including quotes.
Think about all of those sayings we’ve heard since we were young, those golden rules we learned as children – friends share, friends keep secrets, friends play nice, friends are honest, friends are always there for you, friends don’t judge you.
On a good day, sure. But how many good days do each of us have, normally? In reality, those go more like this: Friends share sometimes, when they feel like it. Friends say they’ll keep secrets, but they will literally always tell at least one other person. Friends play nice when they want to, not when you need it. Friends are honest, about the things they choose to be honest about. Friends are there for you, when it is convenient for them, or when they want something in return. Friends don’t judge you, except they always do.
Those foundational principles of friendship we learned at such young ages are fundamentally flawed. Every single person you know in this world has their own personal agenda (as they should), and while they are busy creating the life that they want to live, you, at very best, are number two on their priorities list.
You are number two, on their very best days. And they, just like you, have bad days.
So, although this post was starting to head down a dark tunnel, with so many preventable tragedies happening around us, I wish we would all actively choose to practice kindness more often, as often as we possibly can. I’m talking about that deep down, from the bottom of your heart, patience and understanding, that shows up when a death occurs, then disappears until the next one comes.
Don’t stay mad because your friend cancelled plans for whatever reason. Don’t resent your friend when they didn’t ask how you are, and instead dumped their bad day in your lap. Don’t expect your friend to prioritize you over the rest of their life, and don’t be bitter when they never do.
In the same vein, don’t tear down that customer service representative over the phone because English is their second language and they’re having a hard time understanding your needs. Don’t slut-shame, fat-shame, poor-shame, or glam-shame.
“BE KIND, for everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about.”
–Plato, Philo of Alexandria, Ian MacLaren, or John Watson.