Wednesday, January 30, 2008

A new look at an old problem.

Over the past year or so, I have had an issue with "friendship." I have found myself having to redefine what I believe friendship to be, convincing myself that my new concepts are valid, and put those ideas into action. The ideas of friendship that I believed in as a younger man, no longer seem to be valid as applied to my life and ideals today. Looking back, my relationships have been grossly imbalanced. People that I have consider friends have continually let me down. I discovered recently that I was committed to people / friends that weren't committing the same in return. So I had to ask myself if these people were really friends to begin with.

Let me begin by explaining to all of you that I have many acquaintances but very few close friends. I still tend to be more comfortable in small groups than I do in crowds. I tend to follow / join conversations rather than initiate them. It is comfortable for me, and I am happy that way.

As the years have gone by, I have lost touch with almost all of the people I new as a child and young man. To be honest, it was not due to my lack of trying. Every year or so I would call the few close friends from my past to catch up. The conversations were pleasant. We would say things like "we need to stay in touch" and "let’s get together soon." I knew all along that this was not going to happen. Year after year, I would initiate the calls and get none in return. I really was pathetic. I have been trying to hold onto bits of my past while life has been passing me by.

Several events have changed my thoughts and outlooks on friendships. The first major one has been the distance I have placed between my family and me. As a victim of abuse, this separation has given me a kind of new found strength. Secondly, by placing myself into comfortable situations, I have discovered people putting themselves out there and showing interest in me as a person. To be honest, this is scary. Establishing trust and learning about new people in intriguing and exciting. It is also daunting and intimidating. The third event came unexpectedly, just after New Years. A friend from high school called me on the phone. We had been playing phone tag for several weeks when he finally reached me on my cell phone. We talked for about twenty minutes. It was one of the most genuine talks I had had in a very long time. Life has really beaten him down, and it sounds like he in a very bad place in his life. He told me he is floundering and just can't seem to find a new direction. We discussed growing up in "Fuckerville". I sincerely thanked him for his friendship when we were young. He was really the only person that talked me up when the rest of the world was taking turns kicking me in the balls and beating me down. That’s what I told him, almost verbatim. He thanked me in return and said “That means a lot to hear, I wish I hadn't lost touch with you." Unlike past phony plastic phone calls, it felt genuine to hear "let’s get together." I discovered that he has a blog. I read it regularly. His blog was one of the inspirations to begin mine. Someday I will share this with him.


2 Beer Farts:

Mighty Dyckerson said...

My best friend is Jack Daniels. Perhaps you've heard of him.

Jake Titus said...

Wow, small world. Jack and his friends Jose Cuervo and Sam Adams will be at my house on sunday to watch the game. I'll tell them you said "hi".