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February 2, 2004

Friendship is Being There

When friends turn to us at a time of need, there is one main requirement—being there. We don't have to fix the problem, give advice, or soothe it away. We just need to be there.

In order to be there fully, we need to be balanced enough in ourselves to recognize that this problem is theirs and that our friends have the innate intelligence to work through it. To be there fully, we need to let it be their time, and not let our issues and agenda get in the way. To be there fully, we need to take interest and really listen. To be there, we need to hold them in our minds, our hearts, and sometimes in our arms.

Being there for our friends means we let them express themselves fully without judging them. We let them meander through their pain, fear, anger, and sadness knowing that things may look different to them tomorrow. Just be there. Let the storm blow until it is done.

By being there we give the greatest gift—letting our dear friends be themselves—and letting them be there, too.

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