Friendship is so fantastic I smile every time I think about it.
Today was a very special day because we had our own “Friendsgiving” dinner. We ate ham, salmon, roasted potatoes, asparagus, and a cheesy baked brie bread. Everything was so delicious and we had so much food that everyone was able to take home leftovers. I am so thankful!
Fall is such a wonderful time because of many things, but for me it is especially great because of the holidays. November serves as a reminder for me to be so aware of everything in my life and to be thankful for so many of my blessings. It is so wonderful that I live in a world and I exist at the same time as so many delightful people, and I cherish the moments I get to spend with those I have known since my freshman year of college. I am truly, truly amazed at how far we have all come and yet I still smile in awe of the fact that many of us are still friends to this day.
But there is also another aspect of friendship that I was reminded of today, one that I am especially grateful for: understanding. To be friends is one thing, but to truly understand another human being, to truly challenge them to be themselves and to respect them, is another. And I have friends who do this for me, including Chris.
Yes, Chris is my boyfriend, but we were friends first, and our relationship is so much more than a romantic one: it is enhanced by a deep, loving, understanding friendship. One thing that truly helped me today was his understanding of my emotions and his ability to sense when I am on edge or stressing out.
Because the dinner was at our apartment, I wanted to make sure everyone had a good time, the food turned out well, and everything was pretty much prepared by the time others got here. But with these hopes came a bit of stress, and Chris sensed this almost right away. He pulled me aside and lovingly told me to go take a break in my room, but I tried not to listen to him and continued doing whatever I was doing at the time. But a few minutes later, I ended up going to my room and we had a talk, and he basically told me that this is everyone’s dinner, and even though it is at our apartment, we are not responsible for the entire thing.
“The dinner will turn out how it turns out, and it won’t be perfect, and it isn’t your responsibility to make sure it is perfect,” he said. And his words about this, my role in the evening, and just the overall dinner in general made me feel better and helped me understand how I was feeling and process my thoughts and actions. Even though this is such a small aspect of my day–not a big deal at all–it really did impact me.
And you know what happened when I just stuck food in the oven and went to my room to do some work? Nothing! Nothing went wrong, nobody was upset that I wasn’t spending time outside with everyone, everything was fine.
I think sometimes I expect myself to be a host, to make sure my “guests” are doing well. But the truth is, we are in college. We are hardly adults, and this wasn’t some fancy dinner party. This was a group of good friends getting together and eating a meal that we all contributed to. And it was wonderful in its own way.
I am grateful for friends, I am grateful for understanding, and I am grateful for life.