Day 5: Thankful for Friends

Friends are special people, to be cherished and appreciated.

You can't force friends, can you? They sort of just happen organically. You go from casual chats and shared interests, to more personal talks and disclosure. Suddenly, you have a person you can confide in, someone to laugh with.

In this busy life, when you and a pal can pick right up with the conversation you left off with years ago, like no time has passed? That's how you know you've got a real friend.

Friends lift us up when we're down. Friends listen to our stories without judgment. Friends make us laugh, and provide a shoulder on which to cry.

Think of all the friends you have. Friends can be classified into categories. You may have friends you've known forever. People who you went to school with, played with every day on the streets of your neighborhood as a kid.

You probably have friends whom you know you could tell anything to. These could be people with whom you came of age during the college years. Or maybe they're friends that you went through something together with.

Did you volunteer overseas, serve in the military, or study abroad? Friends who find themselves together in unfamiliar lands or adverse situations often create strong, lasting bonds.

What about work friends? If you worked in the same place of employment for many years, you may have some friends from this corner of your life, who happen to know every detail of who you are as a person thanks to stories swapped between cubicles, or on lunch breaks, or in airports, or on job sites.

Neighbors, too, become friends… some, more than others, but still a certain degree of friend.

Some people don't feel that they have many friends. Or, perhaps you've drifted from the friends you once knew.

When we change as a person, we can grow out of the friendships that once felt so comfortable. Maybe your perspective has changed, and your friends can't identify. This can feel sad at first. But remember, there are always new friends to be made on the path of life.

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