TRUE friendship is when two friends can walk in opposite directions, yet remain side by side or so the saying goes. This day and age, have you ever wondered what happened to a long lost friend, wondered what became of your best friend as you move on with your life, busy with work and family commitments? Over the past week, Ive been planning to catch up with a few friends but never really made time to meet up. It was always work, home, work and more work, socialising in between time and again.
I realised the more you grow apart from some of your friends, the more you begin to see how much life has changed for all of you. Some drop out of school early to find a job to help out at home, others reach their full academic potential dedicating their lives to making a difference and some are content with married life and all it has to offer. But no matter how far or distant you are from your best friend(s), there will come a time or experience that will take you back to the days when it was just you and them.
Over time, youll meet new faces, make new connections and sooner or later youll find yourself glued to this whole new bunch of friends. But at the end of the day, the friends youll really care about are the ones who have stuck by you through thick or thin, friends who have seen you at your best and your worst but still love you for who you are.
Kaila! discovered that even though some friends have drifted apart because of changing lives and priorities, others never lost that friendship spark for their buddies.
Take Natalyn Lakhan for example, a 22-year old who recently completed her studies at the University of the South Pacific. Shes got quite a number of people on her Facebook page but out of 400 plus friends, six she considers are her best friends.
One in particular has been by her side since Class Two and its no wonder she plays the mummy role when she sees her friend spiral into oblivion.
True friends are people who are not ashamed to acknowledge their pals, that right there is what I consider a real and true friend, she told Kaila!
Suzan and I have known each other since Class Two and its basically someone youve had by your side through everything and anything. We have our fights and differences. When I reached high school, there was a time when we never spoke because she got into the wrong crowd.
I basically told her off for that one day and she came around. Now most of them (in the wrong crowd) are well, nowhere in life and she (Suzan) just posted that shes passing her law units.
I check on her daily to see if her assignments are done. I know right, total Mommy
She says having friends around keeps her grounded and at times, being a good friend means telling the ugly truth.
Youve just got to tell them straight if something is right and if something is wrong. I would never tell her that a size eight dress she forced herself into is nice - if its tight, its tight!
She also offers me advice when I need it or dont. Im just saying, thats what friends do for each other.
Tura Lewai, a Suva resident, shared similar sentiments about friendship saying true friends will stand by you no matter what.
He says they can even become your worst enemy to prevent you from doing the wrong things.
They dont watch you doing something wrong and just let you do it. They step in to help you out. Id say I probably have 20 true friends, six best friends, out of probably 1700 friends on Facebook.
Tura says its only natural to miss spending time with friends who have moved on and started married life or taken on a demanding career.
It doesnt mean though that the time we spend together is of any less importance. In fact, its better because you try and make the most of the time that you do have but you find the conversations that you have changing and its only right that it does, he says.
Of course we do have fights because being friends doesnt mean you have to like the same things or that you have to follow each other blindly.
It actually means that you are brutally honest with each other and this honesty can rub you the wrong way but you eventually make up.
Then you realise after the fight or leva that your friendship gets more stronger.
Mags, a nurse in New Zealand spent most of her life in Suva. She says having friends in her life is important and even though shes found a budding professional career overseas, she finds means and ways of staying in touch.
Normally through Facebook when I sometimes wonder about a friend, I call or text them just to see how they are. If theyre close by, Id pay them a visit, she said from New Zealand.
But I can live without friends in my life but I cant live without family. I think Id choose family first then friends but it depends on heaps of factors like your upbringing, the number of friends you have who are closest to you and those who spend a lot of time hanging with you.
I can make up with friends after a fight or if they stole my hairbrush then thats sweet - but if they slept with my man or did something really hurtful that pisses me off, then hell no.
Another tertiary student, Jane, says constant emailing and social network sites are her regular dose of staying updated and tuned to her friends whereabouts these days.
They occasionally plan to meet up, enjoy a couple of meals before heading off the movies for the latest shows.
I cant really live without my friends because apart from my family, theyre the next best thing to a diary, she said.
Id say out of 596 friends on Facebook, only 10 are true friends. I dont think Ive ever had a big fight with a friend but I think honesty is very important in any friendship.
I find when friends start to get married or get a job, it gets harder to meet up and even if we do meet up, they bring their boyfriends along so we dont really have that friend-to-friend moment with third party presence.
Theres no harm in making friends, confiding in them or looking for some moral support can actually take a load of stress off your shoulder. Time and again, friends meet up and when they do, its back to the good old times.
So if you have that friend youve been thinking about or wondering what theyre up to these days, now is always a good time to catch up on the latest. Who knows maybe they might just be that cheerful light youve been waiting for.