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The Most Irreplaceable Piece Of Our Lives: TRUE FRIENDS

I’ve always looked back fondly on the nostalgia filled saying, “A good friend will come bail you out of jail, but a true friend will be sitting next to you saying…’Damn, that was fun!.”

Some of you may remember that I’m a big follower of the philosophies of Ferris Bueller and Tommy Pickles when it comes to breaking the rules. However, there are certain things in life in which breaking the rules doesn’t work, and one of those happens to be that of being a good friend.

Me? I’ve got the greatest friends in the world. I love them to death. Every time I leave the country I carry a stack of 4X6’s with me so I can reminisce about our good times. It’s perfect for long train rides. But lately, I’ve been seeing changes in how friendship works. I’ve been learning how and why certain friends are fading in my life, and why others are clearly going to be by my side through the rest of this crazy ride.

THE PROGRESSION OF FRIENDSHIP

Remember how back in high school our friends were our lives? Through thick and thin during those reckless years of teenage angst, nagging parents, and getting our older siblings to buy us beer, we had our friends by our sides and that was all that mattered.

In college we started growing up and thinking more on an individual basis, but we were still in it together and we were all in the same rocky but fun boat. We were cramming for exams, piling up those class credits, and drinking too much cheap beer on weekends.

Things start to change after the good old college years. We aren’t up against our parents or our exams anymore. We don’t care about sneaking around with beers and drinking jungle juice out of red cups anymore. We have our life to worry about, and we want to make sure we do what it takes to make it a great one.

And that’s when life starts to get a little tricky. Suddenly we’re off trying to make something of ourselves and those nights when all that mattered was sitting around with friends drinking a beer and talking about life are now becoming few and far between. It’s hard to find the time and it’s difficult to keep in touch. This is sadly when friendships begin to fade.

WITHOUT MY FRIENDS, I’D BE LOST

You see, me and my friends, we used to laugh a lot thinking that everything always would remain. Well, certain things, contrary to our naïve expectations, did change. But other things – the important things – didn’t.

Time and space change. Circumstances change. Life changes. But what’s at the root of your friendship never changes as long as you stay true to yourself.

What do I mean by staying true to yourself? Well, for me, I firmly believe that I would be a lost, stupid, lonely, loser without my friends. They’ve been there for me when I was winning in life and when I was loosing in life. They cheer me on and push me when I’m doing great, and they tell me, “Lauren WTF were you thinking?!” when I’m not doing so great. It’s all about loyalty. It’s loyalty to yourself to stay who you are at the root, and loyalty to your friends to never forget that they are the ones that helped you form that root. It’s these kinds of friendships and connections that are irreplaceable and leave a lasting footprint on our lives.

For instance, my main man Adrien  whom I’ve been friends with since the awkward days of 6th grade just visited me this week after having been away in France for the past year and a half. He and I went to separate colleges in different states, have lived in different countries in opposite hemispheres, and go months to even years without seeing one another. But when we do, it’s like nothing has changed. We’re still cracking the same jokes, still acting like goofballs, still having great conversations, and still have the same connection we’ve always had. (I Love you Man!)

These are the friends that you can be your true self with. They put life in perspective for you just by being with you.

Why would you ever want to let that fade away?!

ARE YOUR FRIENDS FADING INTO THE BACKGROUND?

Aristotle once told us, “The desire for friendship comes quickly. Friendship does not.” I think Aristotle was onto something here. But I also think we could add something to his words of wisdom:

“The foundation of a lasting friendship comes easily. Making it last does not.”

I’ve seen friends come and go from my own life and the live’s of others because one or the other forgot that it’s a two way street. We get caught up. We get busy. We have our priorities and our commitments and our responsibilities.  These things never go away.

But with a little effort there is ALWAYS TIME for your friends. No ifs. No ands. No buts.

And what do ya know? If we keep our friends in our lives those priorities, commitments and responsibilities get a lot easier to take on.

SUMMING OF FRIENDSHIP WITH A CALL TO ACTION

Ask yourself, “Are you being the great friend you expect yourself to be?” Have you taken time out of your busy schedule to connect with those that help to make you who you are? When is the last time you called or sent a brief “Hey, how’s life?” email to your old best friends? Have you blown off the last few times a friend has invited you out because you were just too busy even though you really weren’t? Are you there for your friends? More importantly, do they know it? And do they know just how important they are to you?

Without our friends, we got nothin’. So, let’s not take them for granted. Rather, let’s make it know that without them, we’d be lost, stupid, lonely losers. 😉 All it takes is a little effort and a little love.

What does friendship mean to you?

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About Lauren Rains

Life gets pretty f*cking nuts sometimes, doesn't it? Every day I wake up more to myself and more to this world. This website is an expression of that.

Space Travelers is multi-layered exploration of our existence here on this rock we call Earth. We're going to talk about the matrix, UFOs, and astral travel, and explore our awakening into the divine masculine and feminine. We'll discover our bodies both the physical and subtle body. We'll contemplate the sacredness of mother earth and the concept of who/what the hell made this place in the first place?

I also aim to keep this website rooted and grounded, referring to topics that are effecting us in the here and now, such as fighting against the oppression of women worldwide, pealing away layers of social conditioning greedy capitalists are using to turn us into consumers, and navigating this insane technological revolution before the AI take over. I can geek out on consciousness up in space all day, but life happens here on the ground and this is the time we were born into.

This website is about integrating into our full human experience, aligning with ourselves and with each other, shedding skins and transcending into the unfolding layers of ourselves.

My wish for you, and for myself, is to unfold and evolve into our highest selves. We are spiritual beings having a human experience. We need not sell our souls to the status quo.

I'm on the journey too. I write this blog to speak to others who are waking up, or who desire to wake up. Because we can't do this alone.

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  • Adrien

    LO!!

    This was a great post.. Thank you for making me a part of it.. You know we go together like PEAS AND CARROTS hahaha.. .You will always be my girl for life.. Keep inspiring people to be the best person they can be.. I LOVE YOU TONS!!

    • Hey Adi!
      Haha we go together like PB&J baby! You are the best friend someone could ask for! So glad I didn’t write you off when you brought in that silly “bee catcher” in Mr. Budd’s class in 6th grade haha. (Just kidding. I thought that was badass!)
      See you next time one of us crosses the pond!

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  • I think you’re right when it comes to not letting friends fade, and the truth of it is that it does take work. I have a group of guys that I can pick up with like nothing ever changed too. There’s no awkward period or get to know you crap, it just is what it is. Great post!

    • Hey Kyle!
      Yup, those kinds of friends are the best. There are just certain people in this world whom you just connect with. The coolest part about it is usually it happens in an instant. You meet, you talk for a bit, and before you know it you find yourself saying, “Yea. This guy/girl is pretty cool. We’re gunna be good friends.”

      I wonder what the difference is, though. There are friendships that fade and when you try to reconnect it seems that connection has faded as well, and there are other friendships that fade yet when you reconnect it’s like nothing ever changed. 🙂

  • I think one of the hardest things that has come across my plate is the fact that Shaun and I have been growing and changing while our main group of old high school buddies have stayed stagnant. I would give anything for things to be as joyful and amazing as they used to be. But how many keg stands at 28 can you do after some point in time?

    • Hey Erica!
      Yea I know what you mean, and I really wish I didn’t actually! It’s kind of weird how at one point we’re all on the same level and all want the same things more or less. And then some of us just seem to speed ahead growth. However, the ones that to grow with you and you still can connect with so much because they’re also off making themselves better and challenging themselves and doing things that help us to grow, well it’s just amazing experiencing that connection. The guy I wrote about above, Adrien, I’ve known him for about 12 years!!! I feel so lucky to be able to have a person like that in my life that is so on the same page as me.

      The other interesting part about it all is a lot of it has to do with perception and what our values are in terms of what we consider to be growing. I’ve had a friend ask me, “When are you going to grow up and settle down, Laur? Do you really plan on going back and forth with traveling the world forever. Isn’t that unrealistic?” To them, growing is being “responsible” and taking less risks – as in accepting the reality that flighting the status quo is a sign of growth.
      The difference here though, is our values. We’re both probably both growing a whole lot, but just in different ways. (I of course think my way is better haha)

      However, if there are 28 year-olds that still are doing keg-stands, chugging beer bongs, and drinking nothing but Miller Light out of solo cups, well, then yea, they’ve got some growing to do! 😛

  • Yes! I loved this post. Since graduating school, I’ve moved away from all my best friends. Like you say, life gets in the way and you do your own thing, knowing that they are there, somewhere, still being your friend.
    But there’s nothing like having them close by and forging those bonds by experiencing life together.

    And I’m most excited about this post ’cause my best buddy, my bromance, is moving to the same city as me in less than one month! Talk about getting childish giddy over something – we are like to school kids who snuck out late at night, breaking the rules our parents set, and giggling about all the possibilities and trouble we can get ourselves into. I can’t wait!

    Awesome post, Lauren!

    • Hey Collin!
      Man I know how you feel! Once I graduated college I moved to China for a year! I just got back 3 months ago and a week ago I moved down to FL for the winter. (I Loathe cold weather!) And, while I love the adventure of being new places, I really do miss being able to spend time with my closest friends that I’ve grown up with and continuing to forge those bonds the same way.

      That is so awesome your bromance guy is moving into the same town as you! Hey, there’s nothing better than your best friends, ya know? 🙂 Especially the ones that you just barely avoided getting caught and in trouble with haha. Just don’t get into too much trouble now! Of course, get into some though. Life is boring without getting into a little trouble haha 😉

      Your blog is awesome and what you’re doing is awesome by the way!!! Definitely looking forward to more from you Collin!!!! 🙂

  • I can tell you are pure friendship gold Laura – I think I’m going to drop a few friends a line right now : )

    • Thanks Mark 🙂 I hope throughout my life I never get so caught up in the race as to forget who helped me become who I am and who continues helps me to become better 🙂 There’s’ nothing better than just sitting around with some good friends, drinking a beer, and talking about life and old times 🙂

  • Paulius

    Great article! I too am about a month away from being reunited with my #1 bromance. It’s amazing how time can pass, ideas can come and go, but when a couple of idea-machines are together in the same city, sparks can go off like the Festival of Lights… on speed.

    I love my romances and bromances. But though romances may come and go, bromances can last the whole way.

    • Hey Paulius!
      hahaha you know what? I think there must be a whole other level to bromances. I mean, I love my girls n all, but I think there is a different kind of bond between two male best friends. The kind that says, “I love you man” where you never have to say it, wheras girls tell each other they love each other all the time haha. With boys – its an unspoken bond.

      Although, I’m just a girl so what do I know haha. I’m just guessin here haha.

      Anyway, I am very excited for you on your bromance and your Festival of Lights on speed. haha you crack me up.
      Glad to see you’re a dedicated friend who keeps those values strong at heart.

  • Ha ha Paulius, you’re hilarious – love it buddy!

    And Lauren, our bromance is filled with many I love you’s. But it’s more of a deep-voiced manly “love ya buddy” with a head nod and a grunt that carries with it much appreciation and respect.

    Paulius – Lauren is a web designer. When you finally decide to grow some balls and get your mug online she’ll help to make it look gorgeous (your blog, not your mug you goof). When you finally get here we’re creating a Paulius blog that pumps out premium content better than that damn Golden Goose can pump out golden eggs.

    • hahaha… “Better than a damn Golden Goose can pump out golden eggs.” – That has to be one of the greatest comparisons I have ever heard in my life and I will never forget that.

      Paulius – I can definitely design for you a gorgeous blog to pump out your golden egg blog posts. As for your mug, photoshop can do wonders! haha 😉

      Glad to see your bromances are strong and healthy and full of clear communication – the foundation of all lasting relationships haha.

  • Hey Lauren, you know, I value my closest friends very highly. I’ll make time for them and be there whenever I can. Not because they’ll do that for me too but because they do it without asking.

    My closest buddies and I meet once a week for poker…we play purely as a social thing rather than playing for the money but it doesn’t matter how busy we get we still make that time so we can get together, chat breeze, wind each other up, out play each other, and simply just have a blast!!

    • Hey Amit!
      That’s awesome. It’s so great to meet people that understand the value of friendship. It is unfortunate that there just seems to be a lot that don’t understand or that seem to forget.
      What you do with poker every week is awesome. That is the bes way to make sure you guys see each other – set a recurring time every week and just make it happen.
      And I’m sure if one of you ever moved somewhere else, well, maybe the poker would stop (just play on Full Tilt online together then haha) but your friendships would remain the same.
      I’m happy for you that you have WONDERFUL friends! 🙂 Everyone deserves em’.

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  • This is great, Lauren! It’s true: friendship does change as we get older – but the importance of friendship does not.

    For a long time I carried alot of guilt around about “expired” friendships…but one day I realised that we don’t “have” to keep in contact with all of our friends. Life changes us. And it changes our friends. And sometimes people fall apart. I’m at peace with that now.

    In closing, I saw this in a book the other day, and it seems relevant here…

    “I sought my god
    my god I could not see.
    I sought my soul
    my sould eluded me.
    I sought my brother
    and found all three.” – Anon.

    • Hey Kristin,

      “Expired” friends – I really relate to you on this one here. It took me a long time to come to peace with this too. I realized that each person we meet, be it a stranger or the best of friends, come into our lives for a certain reason and ours in theirs as well. Sometimes they come back into it, sometimes they don’t, sometimes they never leave.
      I realized I can’t hold onto every person that touches my life, but I just need embrace the fact that they did.
      I’ll always love them for the piece of me they molded that I’m proud of.

      Thank you for sharing that poem. It’s really powerful. I love stuff like that that is short but sweet yet still has such a strong and clear message that resonates with you.

      • You just pulled the pin on a personal development version of hiroshima inside me with that comment Lauren. Am letting go of someone now.

        It’s true: everything has a purpose. Every element of every system has as its basis utility. Friendship is the same – even if that utility is more esoteric or less quantifiable in nature 🙂

        I guess when we let go of those old friends, we make room for new ones to come in, too.

        This must be what it is like to grow.

        • “This must be what it is like to grow.” – That made my smile.
          It’s a nice moment, ya know? When you’re inside of the moment and you know as you’re sitting in your own skin at that exactly point in time that you’re growing or changing for the better.

          And as far as people in our lives go, letting go of them has been one of the hardest lessons I’ve ever learned. But you’re right, it makes room for new ones to come in. I suppose it’s like letting go of anything in your life that has been there while it was supposed to and now its time to go: when you let go of it, it makes room for something even better, even more positive, even more inspiring to fill in that gap.

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  • Ali

    I’m glad someone just tweeted this post, I missed it when it first went up. I’m getting ready to move to Germany, which is really exciting but it also freaks me out to think about leaving my friends. This was a nice reminder that true friends remain no matter the distance.

    • Hey Ali!!!
      First of all… I can’t wait to read more about your journeys once you move to Germany! Congrats on that! Amazing! 🙂
      You know what? I’m getting ready to move abroad again in a few or more months and I still need to reread this article to remind myself of this b/c it’s never too easy saying goodbye to your true friends. Although, I have to say, that I spent the past 6 months in the beach town of St. Augustine, Florida and I’ve made some truly amazing friends… I guess we can find them wherever we go if we open ourselves up to it, ya know? We have to find that connection.
      But either way… that’s the beauty of friendship… it stands the test of time and distance 🙂
      – Laur 🙂

  • Friends are DEF one of the MOST important pieces of this life puzzle. When it comes to REAL close friends, to me I consider them almost no different then family.

    I think as we get older it really becomes a quality over quantity type of thing. In grade school… you want the MOST friends… Now you want people around you that raise your quality of life, and it’s okay to not be around the ones that well….. bring it down…

    So here is to QUALITY friends, and I am glad I DEF made some LAST WEEKEND SHARK FISHING!!!! haha…