Perfect Lover, True Friend

“In the heights of emotional distress, sometimes your loved ones can’t fill the answers you are longing for to wipe away the tears in your eyes, it’s your friends, somehow, that un-noticeably comforted you. It is to them you could share your hidden sentiments that you are trying to conceal.” – Jonathan Page Acabo

An unbearably soggy day in Charlotte, I donned my favorite raincoat and still made it out for an early morning walk through the city.

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Opting today for a brief stop at the library rather than the Elmwood cemetery for some reflection time, I stopped by the “whats new” section near the entrance to see if anything caught my eye.

As it turns out World Kindness Day is November 13th, and with it, a couple dozen books hand picked by the library staff filled the shelves.

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One in particular, Everyday Kindness by Stephanie Dowrick jumped from the shelf.

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Quickly flipping through a few of the chapters I came across one titled Perfect Lover, True Friend.

A couple of excerpts read:

“What often gets in the way of an intimate relationship is a crowd of unconscious assumptions or demands that have been projected onto the other person: make me happy; give my life meaning; know what my needs are even when I don’t; be perfect. These things can weigh the relationship down heavily, not just because they are unrealistic, but also because they make it harder to see and appreciate what is happening and what is going well.”…”Intimacy gets its best chance when each person can move from an impossible idealization (“With this perfect person I will have a perfect relationship”) to a more genuine sense of who the other is and what an intimate relationship can or even should provide”…”As each person becomes more individually confident and self-aware, this also helps them, as a couple, to appreciate each other very much as friends would. And far from making things less special, this inevitably enhances, rather than diminishes a couples love”.

Deep thoughts for a Friday, I know.

But think of any great relationship you know, isn’t it also a great friendship? It’s the healthy separateness that makes the time together more enjoyable. No different than your time with a close friend, you don’t expect your friends to be everything or go to them to get everything. You show up as who you are, with what you have and…hopefully…that is enough.

Have a good weekend kids. See you on the journey.

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