A couple years ago a colleague and dear friend decided to transfer from our company's Kansas location to our Southern California location. I was happy for her but oh so sad for me. I've never been too keen on having close friendships with the people that I work with. I like to leave everything and everyone at work when I come home for the day. I don't want to think about my work. I want to think about home. I want to think about my husband and my dog and...even the cat that irritates the hell out of me. I have worked for the same corporation for nearly six years and it's bound to happen, friendship, that is. Let's face it, if you are employed full time, you probably find yourself spending more time with the people you work with than your family. It's a sad predicament, really. I've always been uncomfortable with my co-workers referring to me as family. There are certainly families who treat their relationships like a giant project management department. One makes the plans and the rest follow suit because it's what they are supposed to do. There's always one rebel in systems like that, and that would be me. I've heard it said that we can't choose our family, but we can choose our friends. I have chosen carefully, perhaps to a fault.
A couple of years ago, I was interviewing for a new position in our company. Also interviewing was a young woman whose Bronx accent perfectly complements her confidence. In fact, at first she nearly drove me crazy. She is competitive, passionate and smart as a whip. But the accent, how was I going to learn to like that accent and the boldness! You see, I'm not all too bold. In fact, I'm a little on the reserved side, though few would believe it. But, I have been hurt by people who I trusted with my private thoughts. If my mind were a house, people would always be welcome to chat with me on the porch, but rarely would anyone be allowed to come into the intimacy of my living space. When I find a friend who I can trust, I have found a good friend. Over time I learned that my Bronx friend is not only passionate about her life, but she is passionate about her friendships.
She is someone I could trust with just about anything...except my chocolate maybe.
Friday morning a text message came in: "Are you at work already dear???" If not will you be going in?" "Are you in at 8:00?" and then finally...."Can I bum a ride?" Surprise! My response.....YES!!!!!! I was so excited to see her that I nearly went out the door without brushing my teeth, which may have ended the friendship.
We are born into a family. Sometimes a family is as closely knit as the warmest wool sweater. But when it's not, life can be cold. It can be cold, that is, unless we open ourselves to the unique relationships with others.
I stepped in from the porch one day and opened the door just a little bit and much to my surprise I received an unexpected gift. I received the gift of friendship; a treasured friend who will always be welcome to step in off the porch.
It can get cold standing on the porch, but when you feel the warmth of friendship, true friendship it's worth the wait.
Thanks for stopping by,