Three Friends - Then & Now
I have been thinking a lot about the topic of friendship recently. Last year, I wrote about the three categories of friendship, and now I have come to the conclusion that the three people who I once considered to be my closest friends were today in reality Category 1 (proximity) or Category 2 (circumstance) friends.
My three close friends moved away after graduating from college and I have only seen them a handful of times over the past decade. At first communication by phone or e-mail was a regular occurrence. Over time, however, the phone calls dropped off and communication was relegated to e-mail. The time between e-mails got longer and longer while the text of the e-mails got shorter and shorter. Today, communication between us is virtually non-existent.
To be sustained, friendship needs to be mutually nurturing. If one person makes all the efforts to stay in contact, is it really a true friendship, or even a friendship at all?
I can say that these three people were my friends at one time, however, in all honesty, I am not sure I can say that they are my friends today.
This leads me to my next question.
Who are my friends today?
I can count my friends on one hand; with three fingers. One is a former co-worker with whom I now get together once a week to walk with at lunchtime. The second is person who once worked in my building and now we stay in touch on a daily basis via telephone and e-mail. The third is a person that I have never met. I met him through blogging and now I am in touch with every day via e-mail. I have never heard this person's voice since we have never called one another. Somehow, it is the written word that connects us.
If I attempt to place these three new friends into categories, I would speculate that the first two friends would mostly likely be classified as Category 1 friends. I am uncertain, however, how my third friend would be classified. We do not share proximity or circumstance. We share many common interests and often see the world through the same set of eyes. We enjoy the discussion of ideas, trends, and events and routinely recommend books for each other to read.
This may sound completely ridiculous, and I am not sure what it says about me, but I feel that today he may be my closest friend.