The miracle of friendship.

photo(51)A friend is the only person in the world who understands exactly what you’re saying even though you may not be talking. ~ Anonymous

I have written before about my gaggle of girlfriends.  We have a tradition of gathering at one of our homes two (or more) times a year and sharing space and joys and woes.  We’ve been through hard times together, but what stands out is how much we are able to laugh together.

We are fortunate that one of us has a home at Carolina Beach, NC, and that’s where we were for the long Martin Luther King, Jr., weekend.  I prefer the beach in the off season.  I generally don’t head for the shore when it’s hot and sticky and there are nine million people elbowing and shouting and hoping to get in whatever space I’m trying to occupy.  That’s not my idea of fun.  Sorry for the digression.  Back to friends.photo(47)

Sometimes we play games.  Sometimes we watch movies, or an ACC basketball game.  We might eat out all weekend, or we might eat in the entire time.  There are no rules.  Well, there is the unwritten rule that we are a support system for whichever one(s) may need a sympathetic ear and/or a shoulder.

One of our group has suffered a great deal of loss in the past couple of years.  She lost her mother and her father in a very short span of time.  Unfortunately, she is also dealing with a number of other personal losses.  Still she’s our comedian.  And through all her hard times she is able to make us laugh…and cry.  I think that’s a small miracle.

photo(48)I can’t talk about this group without telling you a little about S.  She, too, makes us laugh.  When she and her husband were building their house, she wanted to know why she couldn’t omit the kitchen as she had no plans to cook.  And the miracle is that she baked cheese biscuits for our breakfast the last morning we were there.  Who knew she could cook!?

Often we give in to silliness such as these little flamingo-pink rubber duckies.  We have long had a pink flamingo thing going on, and this trip L brought each of us a small flock of ducks in that tacky color.  We had to provide a pond so they could swim.  Some of them wouldn’t sit straight in the water.  They looked like they were diving for something.  One of our group, of course, said those were the ones that had too much to drink.  (I say like some of us.)  And we giggled some more.photo(52)

In everyone’s life, at some time, our inner fire goes out.  It is then burst into flame by an encounter with another human being.  We should all be thankful for those people who rekindle the inner spirit.  ~ Albert Schweitzer

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11 thoughts on “The miracle of friendship.

  1. This is a beautiful post, Pat. Per chance I noticed it today. How could I have missed it? I like all this humor in your group.

    ” . . . . We should all be thankful for those people who rekindle the inner spirit.” This is a lovely quote by Albert Schweitzer. Thanks for including this. And thanks for including such beautiful pictures!

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  2. **A friend is the only person in the world who understands exactly what you’re saying even though you may not be talking.**

    This is quite true. I only had this deep bond w/ my sister. I MISS IT. I MISS IT. Xx

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  3. A lovely piece and I bet you’re a helluva friend. I just know that instinctively. My 2 best friends died, one of lung cancer the other by her own hand. The ones I have now are I’d say, 3 ply rather than multilayered. It’s okay but I sure do miss them.

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  4. Over the past twelve months, I have come to know what true friendship really is. thanks for this wonderful post.
    “A friend is someone who knows all about you and loves you just the same”. Elbert Hubbard

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  5. Pat this is a lovely post – you are so, so fortunate – but hey you know that because this post tells me so. The quote you used at the beginning struck a chord with me. I don’t have a gaggle of girlfriends – I’m kind of shy but I do have my lovely pal Jeannie, my closest friend. Yesterday I dropped in with pancakes and we sat by the fire. When I left she had heard words I hadn’t even spoken, she had given me the tightest of hugs and we laughed. I hugged her when I left and thanked her for lifting my soul. Here’s to the important women in our lives.

    In speaking with Jeannie yesterday I discovered I don’t get angry I get sad, Jeannie on the other hand gets angry. How do I deal with my sadness? How does Jeannie deal with her anger? Humour. May we all laugh as much as we need to and smile often 😉

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  6. B and I missed ya’ll this weekend. It was toooooo quiet and organized. Oh, the pandemonium that exists when we’re all together. The disorganization, no plans to follow, and lack of sleep can be exhausting, but there is nothing like it in the world. Already looking forward to the next time we’re together. Love to you, dear friend.

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  7. I don’t know what it is about this post, but I have something in both my eyes now. I hope I have weekends like this in my own future. From this post and my time spent living with my (then future) BIL’s mom, who often talked about her weekly walks with girlfriends and stressed the importance of keeping those friendships strong no matter what, I am so grateful for the gift of girlfriends.

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  8. Pat, that is such a lovely report of your special time. Friends are invaluable and it’s amazing to find who is there when you need support. We don’t always appreciate them till it’s too late. Blessings!

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  9. Nice thought, I am sure, a nice story of a friendly gathering with friends who keep on keeping-on with strong friendships, befriending and re-befriending the bond that created the orbit of Friend in the first place. But for some, I’m also sure, the world is smaller, where the body of friends shrinks to but a few, and that remaining sample is largely consumed by its own family ties and functions, leaving little time for the loner who yearns from the outside, looking-in. And, then, for some, families, as the years roll by, dry-up, disappear through death, abandonment, divorce, or from whatever other means of dissociation that separate people. Pity the individual whose family numbers from the start are stifled, the orphan who never had the opportunity to hold his mother, to play ball with his father, to tantalize a brother or sister–after all, one born without has little chance for large-scale family meetings.

    For those who make families, our children grow, and move in directions that ultimately leave us as parents to stand alone, if not to stand still. They evolve. We age. Where once, as the parents of our young, we served as leaders, role models, recreational masters, and entertainers, we are now through no intentional malice reduced to the one-dimensional role of financial backer. This quite simply is the order of things. “Who needs me, now?” I ask. Well, perhaps with greater fear, “who wants me, now?” I plead. Children mature and develop those very friendships that are at the core of this discussion, a round-about cycle of find-friend, develop-friendship, and watch friendship spin away. So life continues to beat on.

    Aging, it seems, metaphorically is a loss of gravity; yes, the roots to our erstwhile essence wither and grow tattered. Funny, nobody said that, when we are younger, upon embarking on building friendships, cultivating a family, and establishing the security for later years, the cards may not line up as planned. At least nobody ever told me.

    Ken Agnello

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    • Ken, you speak from the heart of one of my best friends. I don’t have the answer- wish I did – but you are right to say: life continues to beat on. We need a reason to carry on, even when we think nobody needs or wants us. I wish you peace.

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