Friendships are a powerful thing.
As humans, they are a vital part of what it means to live in the world. They connect us, ground us, humble us, and teach us about what it means to be a person. From the very beginning of our time on the earth, we are connected to people - and as soon as we begin to develop our independence, it is through relationships with friends that we learn our limits, set our boundaries, and define our experience with the world.
So much of growing up is done with our friends. And while 'growing up' is definitely supported by the guidance and nurturing from our parents and elders, the experiences that shape us and lessons that we learn most often come in the form of decisions made as a result of peer influence (be it good, bad or neutral choices). It is through friends that we practice what it means to trust, to love, and to hurt another person. Through friends, we get our feet wet and experiment what it means to be in relationship with another. As we age, the meaning of a friend changes - but the ways they can impact us remain consistent.
As we look back on years of friendships and reflect what they have given us, it is clear to see the growth they have brought. No matter the current state of a friendship, each has had a profound impact on us - be it through lessons learned, memories created, or shared emotions and experiences. Without each individual relationship that has come into our lives, we would not have the understanding and experiences of the world that we do.
For that, I am grateful.
They may ignite you or hurt you, motivate you or calm you, guide you or mislead you. Whatever the outcome, each has a distinct purpose in building you. Recognize what it is within you that has been shaped or become possible because of each friendship that you have had. For those you no longer know, send your thanks into the universe for what they gave you. And for those that are supporting you today, share your immense gratitude for the gifts that they are giving you. Friendships are a powerful thing between amazing human beings who love, learn, and grow.
May you continue to explore your growth through the power of human connection.