“It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends.”
– Albus Dumbledore
Nowadays I find both of you sailing the (sometimes) treacherous waters of childhood friendships. By instinct you seem to do the right thing, staying away from unnecessary conflict and asserting yourself when it is something you won’t tolerate. I hope you keep doing what you are doing, not accepting rubbish from anyone and being able to mend fences when a friendship goes awry.
Big girl, you have made some new friends this year who really strengthen who you are, a balance to your wild and crazy ways and in turn you balance them out by infusing your enthusiasm for everything into their lives. Little one, you have had your sometimes bossy big sister to deal with all your seven years of life which makes you very well versed in asserting yourself when you are getting overwhelmed. Your maturity astounds me on some days, but we need to work on your empathy a little bit more.
In our culture girls are expected to always be nice, please everybody and make all friendships work. Society tells our girls to try and work it out. We slowly chip away at the instinct and confidence that you are born with, your inner wisdom that let’s you say without malice, ‘I don’t think we can be friends.’ No judgement, just a fact. We simply cannot be friends with everyone. You can tell a good friend from one that doesn’t quite fit by how you are around them. Are you yourself or are you changing yourself like a chameleon to fit in?
There is a season for some friends. Only a few will last you your whole lifetime. Many friends (and people in general) come into our lives to teach us something about ourselves. Maybe how to set boundaries or simply learn about something new and open up our minds. Sometimes, once the lesson is learned, the season has passed and it is time to move on and let go of that friendship. That is okay.
Today it is confusing because it is so much easier to stay in touch with everyone from all stages of your life.. preschool friends, school friends, college friends, work friends, preschool mom friends.. the list goes on and on. So it gets harder to stay in touch with our lifelong friends, the ones you have to actually ring up and talk to.To be honest, I worry about your generation and what your concept of friends will be like. I hope you always have an inner circle of true friends and I hope I have the wisdom to be able to help you navigate the even more treacherous waters of friendship in the years to come.
I want you to remember, that your friends today and many years from now will be lucky to have you in their circle. If you are ever in a situation where somebody else does not want you in their group, trust me, it is their complete and utter loss.
Lastly, you both are so lucky because you will always have the best friend you can ever ask for in your sister. She, more than anyone will be fiercely loyal, always caring and will call you out on any craziness. In between the squabbling I see between the two of you, the greatest joy for me, as a mother, is to see when you two get along and play nicely, and when one of you falters how the other one hurts as well. Two peas in a pod.
Love you more than anything, always and forever,
Your very first friend,
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