What would life be like without friends? For me it would be pretty empty. Often I think I am doing ok until a friend calls and I am close to tears just hearing their voice because a problem shared is a problem halved. Isn't it funny how we try really hard not to burden our friends with our worries and sorrows yet when we finally do and they have us crying and laughing through our tears, you realise just how much you needed that moment, or vice versa.
My friends are a total mixed bag but one thing they all have in common is their strength. A woman doesn't choose to be strong, it's circumstances that make her that way.
A lot of people mistake a strong woman for being hard. This always surprises me, big time! Just because we are not crying and curling up in a ball doesn't mean we don't feel the pain of the trauma we are going through.
My ex husband used to call me a "hard bitch" because no matter what shit was dealt me, I just had to deal with it and keep going. I couldn't win because if I did show emotion, he would not know how to deal with me so I often dealt with it internally. Outwardly I would be functioning but inwardly I would be screaming. As a friend recently put it on her blog, she is often like a duck floating on a pond: above the water all is serene but underneath she is paddling like hell!
Being called that, hurt me deeply and I never expected to hear it from a guy again until the recent crisis with Jack over Christmas and New Year.
I was having a text conversation with Friend with Perks and he was asking how I was doing after the latest ambulance dash. I told him that I felt so worn out and needed to cry but couldn't and he text back that I should "stop being such a hard bitch" and I was totally gobsmacked, hurt and confused cos I thought he knew me! Then I did cry cos how can someone close to you, get you so wrong! I will say that it was the word "hard" that upset me not the word "bitch"! lol
The next day I took him to task about it and he explained that it wasn't really what he meant but he didn't know any other way to explain it. Basically he didn't understand why I couldn't or even wouldn't cry and felt that I should let it all out. Easy done if you don't lurch from one crisis to the other with little space to draw breath in between! Then there is time and space to lick your wounds but in my case, I still have to function in between the chaos and crying is a total luxury! When I told him how it made me feel, he was equally gutted because he never meant to hurt me.
I believe him because he is a lovely guy but he just doesn't have the words sometimes to say what he really means. I am glad we talked about it otherwise it would have festered and hurt our friendship. I think that is the key to friends..........the ability to communicate well through the good and the bad. So if you fuck up and hurt them, you should be able to talk about it without it getting to the yelling and mud slinging stage or is that just me cos I am a coward and I don't do confrontation? See I am all bravado me!
I am not a perfect friend in anyway but I think I am a good enough friend. If you are my friend this is what you can expect from me................
1. When you are sad - I will help you get drunk and plot revenge against the sorry bastard who made you sad.
2. When you are blue - I will try to dislodge whatever is choking you.
3. When you smile - I will know you finally got laid.
4. When you are scared - I will rag on you about it every chance I get.
5. When you are worried - I will tell you horrible stories about how much worse it could be and to quit whining.
6. When you are confused - I will use little words.
7. When you are sick - Stay the hell away from me until you are well again. I don't want whatever you have.
8. When you fall - I will point and laugh at your clumsy ass.
This is my oath. I pledge it till the end. "Why?" You may ask. Because you are my friend.
Remember: A good friend will help you move. A really good friend will help you move a body. Let me know if I ever need to bring a shovel.
I don't know who wrote that poem but it's genius!
So there you have it, being my friend is fairly simple. Expect me to laugh my head off before I give you sympathy unless of course what you are telling me is so not funny and then I will try to behave like a normal friend should! Remember the key word here....try!