Good friends enrich our lives in so many ways. Through a magical combination of similarities & differences, friends offer us the opportunity to know ourselves as we are & help us grow into who we want to be. Our similarities attract us to one another, comforting us with familiarity when we see ourselves in them. When we’re drawn to those we admire, the same recognition’s at work, unconsciously acknowledging these people possess qualities we ourselves possess. By acting as mirrors, friends help us define who we are by reflecting ourselves back to us.
Friends also help us know ourselves through our differences. Differences allow us to see other options & make choices about who we want to be. Sometimes we’re drawn to those who appear to be our opposites & we learn to accept the parts of them we love and the parts of them that don’t resonate with us, thus allowing us a valuable learning experience. By expanding our understanding to include others’ experiences, friends help us accept others. By understanding when someone’s life differs from our own, we can learn about ourselves in contrast. There are times when we see in friends what we don’t like about ourselves. That mirror reflection may be hard to take, but a good friend helps us find ways we can change & supports us in that choice.
Part of the joy of friendship is the feeling we’re accepted just the way we are, with no need to change. It’s a gift they give us & one we can give back every day. Ultimately, we choose friends because they make us feel good about ourselves & life. Through tears and difficulties, friends help us find the laughter. When we find those special people who offer us that perfect combination of comfort & stimulus to grow, we’re very fortunate. Friends – the winged, four and two-legged varieties are those wonderful companions who walk with us through life, help us define & refine who we are and who we choose to be every day.