“Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.” – Anais Nin (1903-1977)
Friendship is a most precious gift that will endure the eternities. Cicero (106-43 BC) said, “Life is nothing without friendship.” To have a friend that you can share your innermost thoughts with is worth more than wealth or material objects. To have a friend that you can laugh and cry with, to have someone make us feel wanted and accepted for who we are…this is the reason for living.
“Many people will walk in and out of your life. But only true friends will leave footprints in your heart.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
Friends can cheer us on when we need encouragement. They can help us over the hump when we’re depressed. They can embrace us when we weep and laugh at a lame joke that we’ve told. We should lift one another up. We should be able to say that because of our association with one another, “I’m a better person having known you.”
Elizabeth Mauske told a story about an unusual and sweet friendship between her mother and an old native Indian woman from Central America. The Indian woman would visit their home often. With each visit, she would give her mother some partridge eggs and berries as a gift. The lovely colorful clothing and coin necklaces the woman wore fascinated Elizabeth. She noticed her copper bracelets as they softly jingled on her arm. The Indian woman only spoke Araucanian and her mother only spoke Spanish. Their conversation was minimal, but they would sit at the table, drinking tea and eating cake together with a smile and a laugh. They seemed to enjoy one another’s company.
Elizabeth noticed each time the Indian woman would rise to leave that she would say the exact tsame words. With great curiosity, Elizabeth and her sisters memorized the phrase and quickly found someone who could translate Araucanian for them. When she found out what the Indian woman had said, she was greatly touched and said it was “the nicest compliment ever uttered.” The Indian woman would rise from the table with a smile and say: “I shall come again, for I like myself when I’m near you.”
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could say this about our friends? Sydney Smith (1771-1845) said, “Life is to be fortified by many friendships. To love, and to be loved, is the greatest happiness of existence.”