Our whole lives are relationships. Belly laughs — the ones you remember years afterwards when you’re driving down a quiet road by yourself or comparing your dim day to the shine of your past — those belly laughs only happen with friends. No one laughs that deep, long, and hard by themselves. That riot of joy takes relating.
The surest soothing of your despair… relationships. How your friend reframed your neuroses to show you that you’re not crazy, you’ve got survival instincts. How they pretend not to notice your inner ugliness — and heal you in the pretending. How they stay so steady with their gaze that the illusions you’ve been nursing dry up and float away.
Our whole lives are relationships. Emergency texting. Solutions that were designed just for you in the bowl of someone else’s heart. The 200 bucks before rent day that saved it all. Persistent love over years that one day melts you into your true self. Relationships.
Helping you pack up your life. On speed dial. Bottomless encouragement. There when you expected them to give up. Taller than your doubts. Seeing what you can’t. Protecting your tenderness. Big enough to fill your abyss. Rescued. Again.
Shouting, holding, dancing it out, smoking it up, pitching tents, constructing ideals, directing determination. That voicemail you save. Presence. The things they hand down to you.
I got your favourite. I transferred the money. Fuck that. You got this. You’re more than you think you are — believe me if you can’t believe yourself.
Our whole lives are relationships. So reach out and keep going in. If you have to choose between flying overseas to see your friends and painting the house this summer — choose your friends. Remember the day. Go to the wedding. Read them the poem. Check in. Forget the deadline and working over time to please people who will never make you feel as good as your real friends. Remember — and do something about it.
When you’re laying on your back watching the stars some very rare night, you won’t be thinking about the car you worked to buy or the blog post you stayed home from the party to write. You’re going to recall the people who got woven into your heart and helped you paint your apartment. You’re going to long for the magic of knowing so much without saying a word. You’re going to wish you had taken more holiday time to hang with them. You’re going to wish you’d stayed up later and extended your stay to ask them more questions about anything at all. You’ll wish you’d gone out dancing.