June 3, 2016

Lately, I have really been thinking long and hard about the friendships in my life. I am so jealous of those people who have friends they have known since kindergarten, or have stayed close since middle or high school. Truthfully, I am not one of those people. I am selective about my friendships, but I am also not the best about keeping up. I have really been thinking and praying through this. I pray that the Lord teaches me to be a better friend and be better about keeping in touch with those I have lost contact with.

I would say I struggle with being vulnerable and deepening my friendships. I absolutely loathe confrontation, so if I can avoid it at all costs, I will. The truth is, without expressing my feelings or thoughts when I am hurt or angry or frustrated, that person will never know how I truly feel. They won't understand my heart, or know to do what they can to fix or better the situation. Then, I have all of this built up emotion, that honestly, when it gets to be too much causes me to just walk away. Now, some friends I have were always great to me, and honestly, there just weren't any issues. Sometimes we just grew apart. But, there are a few that I let go of because of my own issues. I have to take ownership of that.

Turning 30 this weekend has really made me think about what kind of life I want to have in the next 30 years. Do I want to be someone who feels alienated, with no real connection? Or, do I want to truly be vulnerable, approach conflict when needed, and work through my issues? I honestly want to choose the latter, but it makes my heart pound thinking about it.

I chatted with a friend about this yesterday. I told her my fears and thoughts about our own friendship and how this has led me to want to reconnect with some old friends. If I have learned anything it is that friendship, when nurtured, can be a lifelong commitment. It can be just as meaningful, if not more, than a marriage. Friendships do come and go. That is part of life. I definitely don't want to reconnect with those who have been toxic, or unhealthy, however for those who have treated me well, and distance has grown us apart, I do want to salvage those connections.

In my thirties, I want to be a better friend. I know this will all be new to me. At first, it will feel awkward and maybe even forced. There are some points in life that really just leave you at a crossroads. I could keep going the same direction I am, but I feel as though I will end up empty. Friendships can be a beautiful thing, and I am willing to do what I need to do to make them beautiful.

Any tips? Have you struggled with friendships as you've gotten older?

Happy Friday, xx!

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