what we want…and what we get.

389-dec-7-13-2008-great-listener

The thing with fighting with a friend is that no matter how right your side of the argument also is, they make you take a look at yourself- especially if you are the kind who is always on the think anyways.

With H moving away and M moving back, a whole bunch of stock taking was in order. Best friends may be all healing for the soul but given the right time and words, they can also be the most damaging. They tend to take what doesn’t work about you and use it to prove a point, defying some of the conduct codes. At other times they take the same knowldege and help mend you in a way the defies logic also.

Over the last many years, despite the moves, shakes, marriage, kids, heartbreak, big blow-outs and deep freezes that we have subjected oursleves and each other to, my core group of friends has actually remained constant. Some might argue that that would be the ingredient of lasting stuff but recently I am questioning that all over again. Can friends actually last f the dynamics feel one-sided? Someone who I really admired once, matter of factly states that there are always givers and then there are takers and the key to personal peace is understanding what your role and make..well peace with it. Cut and dried enough to make sense, but not grey enough to appeal to my more emotional sensibility, my argument has always been but what about the intangibilities?  How can you quantify giving and taking when you are talking about matters of the heart? How can I say you don’t give me enough in x terms when that person might actually be giving me MORE than enough in y terms? What if I need you to be more emotionally interseted and available rather than physically around?  Is that wrong? Yes, argues my nemesis, you can’t expect from people. You should just know that I am there when and if you need me- otherwise not much can be done.

Is it that simple? The you should know. After years of stormy sailing-and yes I admit in the twenties at times, there was something about the drama that was almost thrilling- I feel I have evolved. Giving is no longer an issue as long as one some level, I feel like Im getting. And only I can really know can’t I? I can’t list down to my friends of what all I am doing for them or have done if they don’t feel like I am doing it. Because then I am not doing it in the way its needed to be done in. Isn’t the whole point of being there- as friends or partners or even enemies that you fulfill the requirement for that post as per your best ability?

A number of times in the recent years, I thought I attained the feeling of having actually reached a milestone. Of having clicked into that place that makes you feel like you are finally on your way to becoming the person you have always wanted to be. Someone whose faults and strengths are understood and appreciated- yes both- by atleast the core  group of friends. Someone secure. Someone who despite it all, managed to pack up the boxes that needed to be put away. I think this idealistic scenario took seed in my head after my marathon watching of Friends, where despite sides, breakups, anger, hurt and joy, they always came back to the simple truth though humour and the ability to see the bigger picture- that they were actual friends. Unfortunately, life, although a soap opera is never like the fun sitcoms, (otherwise I would be a better more confident version of Meredith Grey and would never let McDreamy get away). One learns the value of friends through a series of bumps and hits and misses and yes, through the haze, if we are lucky enough, smart enough and if the stars are aligned right, we do come out ok, having made our points and gotten away with being attacked by others points, with only superficial war wounds- (which fade to almost nothingness eventually if you let them)- to remind us of the fact that we have been been fortunate enough to be have been friended. And maybe that is what the big picture is all about.

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jammie

people who know me...know me.

10 thoughts on “what we want…and what we get.”

  1. I agree, agree and agree. Sitcoms make us feel that within 20 minutes, we can solve an argument, understand where the other person is coming from and by the time we see the credits rolling, we can go back to that safer place. Unless it’s a season finale.

    Most of my friends are hundred and ten percent different from me. Most of them belong to different cultures, radically different ideologies and immensely different lifestyles. I have always expected them to understand me by the virtue of them being my friends – rather than having the ability to share their interests. My best friend wouldn’t read a book if her life depended on it. My other friend is a jock and wouldn’t know alternative rock from hip-hop. The other is younger and believes in God unconditionally. I actually feel as if, sometimes, none of them know me at all.

    But there are times, when I feel, that despite the highs and the lows of differences, we become each others’ ‘person’ anyway. We learn to plough through the difference, the resentment of not being understood, or not expecting them our ourselves to give up a part of us for them, … there comes a point when we realize that it doesn’t matter what the equation states. What you have is real, in its own subjective meaning … and whaddaya know. It’s actually worth holding on to.

    And one last PS. I can be annoyingly like Meredith Grey, so I totally get the analogy.

  2. hmm.. the thing about being the giver and the taker and making peace with it is possibly the hard and fast truth of the situation. theoretically it might not SEEM fair…but logically if you take a step back , atleast for myself, i can easily determine where i am the giver or the taker in specific relationships.
    as for your core riends remaining your core friends…
    i think history and the fact that you ended up together for so many years by default will always keep you guys together as a core. again, applying it to myself i have seen that happen…although it runs back longer for me…

    i guess when the chips are down in friendships one can only try and remember what kept you together…the good stuff, to pull through the rough patches 🙂

  3. Hi Sarah. I’ve been following your blog for a while now but am usually too lazy to comment. However, with this post of yours, you hit a raw nerve, because I’m going through a weird patch with some friends. I understand your point about being the giver and taker. But at some point, you have put your foot down (for lack of a better phrase), when you’re being taken for granted, right? Esepcially when you are always expected to be there but God Forbid (sorry, a little cynical) should you ever need a shoulder to cry on…then the other person is either always too busy or the things going on in his/her life are just too important.

    — I don’t know if I’m making much sense here —

    Anyway, in my experience I’ve found that female friends are usually quite fickle. Yes, they can be great shopping buddies and it’s nice to have a cup of coffee with them every now and then but more often than not, female friends are more or less phases in your life. The ones who stick it out with you are the ones who you’ve known since forever for various reasons.

    Keep writing.

  4. minerva- becoming each others person. i like that line- but can friends really become your person- or is only family actually able to do that by virtue of not having a choice? maybe im rethinking some friend stances so i sound more cynical than i am 🙂 but i hear you on this- eventually somehow i feel it has to be worth holding onto.

    kay. hmm agreed with the give and take- there are roles you fall into but sometimes they need a rethink.
    im not sure the memory of the good stuff is what sustains. it was working through the 20s but somehow i feel the new decade has brought with it different relaizations- different timings and perhaps it needs harder work on all sides which is why we are running into snags. But since YOU sound like the optmimst here instead of the realist you are- ill hold ontot that though.

    sper- thanks for finally delurking- always good to have comments 🙂 and i wholeheartedly agree and endorse putting the foot down on certain counts. I think we exhaust out ability to be there and sometimes just want someone there- everyone has the right to get fed up andbe coaxed out of their i dont care bubble by the other friend taking responsibility. it has to be that way- it cant run on one leg for too long 🙂

    keep visiting.

  5. thank you for this post.

    it puts into words so many thoughts and views very neatly.
    i think it was you who once said in a post long ago that.. ‘let time define some relationships.’ (i have it written in my quote book 🙂 )
    people dont usually change as much as the cirnumstances around them. then priorities shuffle and the inevitable ‘you have changed’ happens. 😦
    from yrs of utter sadness and hurt, while realizing what just happened.. now its just indifference.

    havent emailed you in a while.. i think its time now!

  6. hmm yes people do change and yes i think cheeky, it IS a lot of the circumstances around them also which bring it about- and i guess when a Moment of Clarity (capital M capital C) hits you regarding a relatioonship or a cold untainted viewing of yourself, you hope that the people along with you for the ride also have the ability to do that alongside. But yes it seems that hardly happens that these epiphanies truly collide. And thus, people change away from each other.

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