Sunday January 24, 2021
During the pandemic, one of the most glaring holes in my life has been losing contact with friends. Being in isolation, we must work extra hard to maintain relationships because interacting does not happen accidentally. It must be an intention of high priority, or it does not occur. We have to cultivate the factors that make any relationship strong: Time, Communication, Honesty, and Loyalty.
I miss the standing lunch and dinner dates that I had marked on my calendar. Monthly and even bi-weekly with some of my best friends have dwindled to an occasional Zoom chat. For me, I enjoyed shopping dates and volunteering side-by-side together. The removal of those blessings has left me feeling isolated! How have you filled in and created ways to connect with your buddies?
Yes, Zoom and FaceTime bless us with viewing our pals, but something sometimes seems to drop through the lines. I have taken to writing some notes to fill in the gaps. I seem to be able to pour out my heartfelt concerns in the written language. You may want to jot down a few ideas before your next meet-up so you can be ready for a real exchange. It must always be two-sided so setting aside time for both of you to give a “What’s Up with me, DOWNLOAD for a couple of uninterrupted minutes always helps to clear the air.
I don’t know about you, but I find it hard to say how things are. The truth is that all of us want to appear large and in charge! That started long before Covid 19. But being isolated has brought home that NO ONE can be perfect all the time. Admitting where you feel vulnerable and could use a sounding board makes most things MUCH more comfortable to handle. “Worries shared are HALVED” is what my grandmother used to say. Approaching your friend with authenticity and asking for a listening ear helps YOU cope! Doing the same for him or her is a blessing!
Of course, if you are honest, then being loyal, and having someone you can trust with your stuff is crucial. Our gossip habit as a nation has reached unprecedented extremes. It is so essential to be a trustworthy person. No matter the story, presume it is confidential. Even if you hear it from another, avoid putting in your two cents. Those kinds of conversations are never positive and will taint a relationship beyond salvaging!
Committing yourself to be a friend cannot be made lightly. Relationships worth having are worth the work involved! I hope you are blessed to enjoy being a friend.