The meaning of “Best.”

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“I had so much fun, Dad…playing with my best friend.”

“I’m happy babe…its so nice to see you make a new friend.”

This tidbit happened last night on our drive home from a game. But, then I remembered this last week.

“So how was your day baby? Have fun at school?”

“Yeah…played fun games at recess with my best friend.”

And this one about a month ago.

“Daddy, I haven’t seen Jonah in a long time…I miss him. He’s my best friend.”

“Soon baby…we have a few get-togethers coming up..and he will be there.”

When I think of a best friend, I think of a person I can always turn to about anything…a person who won’t judge me for who I am now…and who I was in the past…someone who understands what makes me tick…someone who is there to laugh with you…cry with you…and listen to your randomness.

I’m not a mathematician(took me 4 times to spell this correctly, in fact, the first time I tried to spell it, it auto-corrected to “math magician” which sounds way more cool) but doesn’t that make 3 best friends? One little girl she met two weeks ago…one girl she has been going to school with for three years…and a boy she has known since she was tiny.

And when someone says something or someone is the “best,” that means top of the heap…number one…numero uno…head honcho.

It made me look at how I judge my friendships. Who did I consider my best friend? An imaginary circle popped up in my head. That circle then broke into different circles….bigger ones….small ones…medium sized ones. And there were categories…and sub-categories. The internal discussion in my head was mad crazy.

“…definitely so-and-so. But…well, I have definitely known this other person longer…so it has to be so-and-so…no no…we didn’t talk for a long time…so I have to consider that gap…the gap is important…the other person was consistent with their friendship…but wait, what about so-and-so…they know EVERYTHING about me…but I have not known them as long as the others…the deepness of the conversation is important…so i have to judge it by length of friendship….how much they know the real me…and keep into account, any gaps of friendship or awkward fights.”

This was going to take forever. I literally thought about putting all of these friendships on an excel spreadsheet to figure this out…color-coordinate it by categories. But, that is a lot of work…and my life is pretty much based on doing the least amount of work possible. It made me realize, it is normal to have lots of best friends. But, what makes this possible…is the situation.

For example:

Work best friend:

The person you talk to the most at work. You gripe about the job together…complain together…laugh at people together.

Significant other/wife/husband:

This person deals with you every day. You wake up next to this person…they hear you when you snore….hear other embarrassing sounds…and know what you really look like in the morning…and know how you act before that first cup of coffee.

In and out friend:

Your lives are too busy for each other. But, when you do get to talk to or meet up with this friend, it is seamless. It’s like you spend every day together.

That friend who has that one thing in common with you:

We all have hobbies. And sometimes, no one in our circle of friends, likes that “one thing” you like. It could be a TV show that no one watches…a band that no one else likes…or your weird hobby that is embarrassing. But, for some weird reason, you find a friend who likes that thing too. And you turn to them to talk about it…and it lasts forever. But, you only have that one thing in common. Anything else you try to talk about becomes awkward silence.

That one friend who knows all your “dirt” and you have to be friends with them because you are scared they might tell people about your past:

We all have skeletons in our closets. And someone out there knows about them. You might not be close with them, but for some reason, you are scared that they might start talking about them so you remain civil just to make sure you are more friend…than enemy.

The “advice” friend:

This person says all the right things. Whenever you needed help, this person was there. And you value their outlook on situations. And this person gives it to you straight, even if it might hurt your feelings.

Siblings/Parents:

This could vary. Some of us don’t talk to our immediate family much. But, some of us have very close relationships with our family.

And there are more categories I am sure….but I looked back at my little one’s version of “best friend” and how it differs from mine.

My best friends are situational…and many. So I have several I could consider as “best” friends. Some fit in more than one category…some only fit in one of those before-mentioned categories.

My little one’s best friend status is based on the present. She treats whoever is with her as a “best friend.” She devotes all her time…her laughter…and kindness to that one person…gives her all to that person during her time with that person.

Adults don’t do that. We create friendships…and rank them…and those friendships change over time. We can’t help that. We make a friend and say to ourselves:

“This person is funny. That’s awesome. But, he/she hates Taylor Swift. Ain’t nobody got time for that…”

“This person loves sports. But when I e-mailed them that funny cat video, they replied ‘Eww…i hate cats. Cats can burn in a fire…and I would laugh. Now, that WOULD be a funny cat video.’ Yeah, this person is cruel…not best friend material.”

And we keep those internal discussions forever in a little pocket in our heads. And forever judge them. Imagine if we changed that way of thinking? If we looked at someone….spent time with them…and treated them like a best friend every single time. If we treated them as “best friends” in the present(just like kids do)…and not situational. You gave that person your ear to listen to….your shoulder to cry on…a joke to make them smile…and a little bit of “real” self to them. How fulfilling would our friendships be?

Yes, I know…my little one’s relationships/friendships will change…it’s inevitable. She will become older and her friend “categories” will begin. But, watching her and seeing how she sees friends now…affects me now. And what I do with that will change me and how I treat my friends.

 

 

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11 thoughts on “The meaning of “Best.”

  1. I have to admit I’m not a cat person. The whole pooping in a box, walking through it and then walking all over counters and tables and everything else grosses me out. Sorry. But I wouldn’t want to see them hurt in a fire. I hope we can still be friends. 😉
    I have friends that I think I rank higher than they rank me. And yes, many categories of friends. Even some people that I really wouldn’t call a friend, but don’t know how else to describe or categorize them. My husband is definitely my best friend. There is nothing we don’t share with each other. It wasn’t always this way but I’m so thankful it is now. 🙂
    Good post!

    • We have three dogs in our house…but there is a lot of pressure to add a kitten to the mix. lol. My wife is my best friend also…not just because she’s my wife, but statistically she is number one in many categories of my friend categories lol. Thank you! And it is good to have you back…read your post earlier.

      • aw thanks! It’s good, so good, to be back. I haven’t even had time to read many blogs lately. I feel like I’ve neglected my blogging friends. We have no pets presently. I really get tempted by puppies, but the fact is now that we’re getting older and we want to do some traveling, it is really a lot easier not to have to deal with boarding a dog. So maybe when we get past this stage. What kind of dogs do you have?

  2. I have a best friend that I have known since freshman year of high school. We talk on FB and on the phone sometimes, but when we do talk it is like no time has passed at all… I love that feeling.Of course my husband is my best friend too, he knows all about me and where the bodies are hidden so I have to keep him close. LOL.

  3. This is so true. And I listen to my daughter talk about how many different friends and their names and what goes on…
    I have… 3 best friends. Well, 4 because my husband wants to be a part of that category; I think he deserves a category above it. Or at least a different one. There are just different people for different things.

    But I know three I turn most and work most to keep in contact with; one being my sister.

    This entry is spot on though.

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