It always amazes me what people are willing to throw away.
Most of us dump cardboard, paper, food scraps and all sorts of glass and plastics into trash cans every single day without considering the long-term benefits these items have in our lives.
I guess I shouldn’t be surprised by people’s lack of finding ways to keep these items around, though, given our culture of disposing people in our lives.
Friendships are one of life’s greatest features — each and every one being unique for one reason or another, and many growing into exceptional bonds. But even some of the strongest of friendships are disposed of with no concern. It’s like a shrug of one’s shoulders — “oh well.”
I’ll never understand how one can dispose of a friendship so easily, though. It’s a betrayal I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy.
The topic of disposable friendships came up recently at dinner with a friend of mine. We were discussing how we never could choose a job away from family and friends, as they are the heartbeat of any life.
He said he was frustrated with people who always suggest that when a person moves they’ll make new friends.
“So the people you’re leaving behind don’t matter?” he said.
It was refreshing to hear someone have a similar outlook on life. So many folks see dollar signs and big cities and instantly forget about so much of what they had. We’re so caught up with wanting to make our way to the top of some fictitious corporate or dream ladder that we’re fine with kicking anybody out of the way who comes across our path.
But listening to my friend (and others who share similar views) is a nice reminder that some people do still care about people. It isn’t about some swanky new spot or a fat paycheck that matters to these folks. It’s being close to mom and dad and the friends you’ve grown so attached to.
Sure, everybody has different life experiences — not everybody is close enough with their family or friends to want to stay near home. But, even as my friend suggested over dinner, more often than not, family and friends outweigh any new experiences, new cities and new jobs in the long run.
“It’s just a matter of time before they realize that life is too short to be selfish,” he said. “Nobody lives forever.”
What is unique about my friend with such wisdom is his ability to truly grasp the meaning of friendship. When he talks about his close friends, he does so with passion and conviction. He’s someone you really would want on your side.
Hearing him describe how he loves his best friend and others close to him really is refreshing, knowing how short-sighted and cold people tend to be even to their friends. Their friendship does not come without its faults. Like any other type of relationship, this is not flawless. But that seems to be even a bigger appeal for my friend’s relationship with his friend — that sense that it takes a team effort to keep their friendship going.
I hope the lessons I’ve learned from others allow me to never take for granted the special friendships I have.
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