Today I spent time with some friends I hadn’t seen in a long, long time. Chatted with some friends, two of which are expecting babies this year. We all visited, laughing at jokes, memories, and all the things that life tosses our way. We ate good food, soaked up the sun in the backyard, and caught up on lost time. Some of those friends, my husband grew up with. I got to know them through him, and they have become very dear to me as a result of that connection, as well as the connections I have made on my own. These people have become incredibly precious to me and words can hardly express how much I enjoy spending time with them.
Some of my readers have asked why I focus on my secondary characters almost as much as my main characters. The way I see it, the secondary characters, whether they be family or friends of the main characters, shape who those characters are. Friends especially, can affect my characters in such a way that their personality would be quite different without their friends in their lives. Those characters may not seem as important as the main characters, but even as ‘background people’, they are important parts of my characters’ lives. I enjoy crafting scenes where my characters all come together as friends and memories are made, life stories shared and (almost always) good food and drink is enjoyed.
Allow me to share some of my favourite (some recently discovered) quotes about friendship with you. Woodrow Wilson said, “Friendship is the only cement that will ever hold this world together.”
Albert Camus said, “Don’t walk behind me; I may not lead. Don’t walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.”
“True friendship comes when the silence between two people is comfortable.” ~David Tyson Gentry
“A friend is one that knows you as you are, understands where you have been, accepts what you have become, and still, gently allows you to grow.” ~William Shakespeare
“Wishing to be friends is quick work, but friendship is a slow ripening fruit.” ~Aristotle
“There is nothing better than a friend, unless it is a friend with chocolate.” ~Linda Grayson
“A friend is someone who knows all about you and still loves you.” ~ Elbert Hubbard
“My best friend is the one who brings out the best in me.” ~Henry Ford
“Friendship is the hardest thing in the world to explain. It’s not something you learn in school. But if you haven’t learned the meaning of friendship, you really haven’t learned anything.” ~Muhammad Ali
“I think if I’ve learned anything about friendship, it’s to hang in, stay connected, fight for them, and let them fight for you. Don’t walk away, don’t be distracted, don’t be too busy or tired, don’t take them for granted. Friends are part of the glue that holds life and faith together. Powerful stuff.” ~Jon Katz
“Friends are the family you choose.” ~Jess C. Scott
“Do not save your loving speeches
For your friends till they are dead;
Do not write them on their tombstones,
Speak them rather now instead.” ~Anna Cummins
Once again, friends are so incredibly intertwined with my characters, as my own friends are with my personality, my gifts, my hopes and dreams. No man is an island. Our true friends know the real us. They are there when life gives us joy and still there when it knocks us down and keeps on kicking. When we can breathe again, those friends aren’t waiting for us on the other side…they’ve been with us the whole time and are coming out the other side with us. My friends have made me who I am. My friends build me up when others tear me down. I have a deep affection for my friends, and hope this little blog entry shows you all how much you mean to me. You are my treasures, my joy and the breath of fresh air I need when the world tries to stifle me. When depression hits or fear of the future grabs me by the throat, you, my friends, are always a phone call away. Thank you for being there when I need you most, and for never giving up on me, even when I sometimes give up on myself. You mean the world to me. I’m sorry we don’t get together as often as we would wish, but know that each and every one of you are in my heart and I think of you often.