Two Canadian kindred spirits. Anne of Green Gables and her beloved Diana.

The Restorative Pleasures of Friendship

Posted on November 13, 2015

I don’t have scads of girlfriends. I’m not really a chatty Cathy, social butterfly type. But that’s okay with me. Quality, not quantity is the name of the game when it comes to friendship.

My true kindred spirits – and they know who they are – are my soul sisters. I could call them crying in the middle of the night and they would sit up, rub the sleep from their eyes and say, “What do you need? How can I help?” Fortunately for them, I’ve always made it my business to live a life that requires very few middle-of-the-night phone calls. But I take comfort in just knowing this fact.

The beauty of the kindred spirit is time has no effect on the relationship. Weeks, months or even years can come to pass and we’re able to just pick right up where we left off. There’s no expiration date on the relationship, no awkward conversations, no need to sugar coat the realties of our complex existances and no guilt over the inevitable passage of time. Instead, there’s a deeper connection that spans beyond time and space. I don’t know what it is, exactly, but I think it’s a willingness to be vulnerable. To let down both our guard and our hair. To feel okay admitting we’re scared. Not always easy to do in a world where we are all supposed to be Superwomen, doing it all, perfectly, all the time.

Kindred spirits are not so scarce as I used to think. It’s splendid to find out there are so many of them in the world.
― L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables

These beloveds of mine range from amazing, devoted stay-at-home-moms to successful, sophisticated career women, and everything combination in between. They are all smart, funny, kind and so, so beautiful, both inside and out. Some of them I’ve known since childhood, others are newcomers welcomed with open arms. Even in the getting-to-know-you phase I can tell which ones will be keepers. Once you’re in, you’re in.

The time we spend with them is an elixir for our hearts. We laugh, possibly cry and we leave each other feeling uplifted and refreshed. Their energy is as healing as a spa treatment. A suggestion? If you have “friends” in your life who do not make you feel better after a visit, you may want to think twice about the relationship.

Friendship, at this point in my life, is a carefully calculated investment. There’s so much going on in terms of work, family, activities and so on, that if and when I find myself with a spare moment to spend with someone, it had better be someone whose company I treasure. The conversations must be fun, yet meaningful. Even when the topic of conversation is of a more serious nature that friend will leave you feeling lighter and optimistic and you will do the same for her. Always.

If you have a girlfriend you’ve been missing, reach out! She’s probably missing you too. Make a plan, talk on the phone or drop her a sweet “thinking of you” line.

Your heart will thank you for it.