The meaning of friendship in your childhood is about those who ride their bike alongside you, until the street lights come on and it’s time to retreat inside.
Friendships in your teens are with those who’ll pick you up after too much cider, and dry your tears after VJ 4 JW is no more.
In your twenties, it’s with those people who share experiences and grow with you, perhaps not in the same direction, but grow nevertheless. Who understand the need to get to lectures, but also understand the pull of an 80p bottle of VK Orange.
Friendship to me now, at 31, is about celebrating milestones. It’s about planning weddings, sharing pregnancy tales. Dieting woes, work scandals and love troubles. It’s about spending time with those who enrich my life.
It’s about staying silent when the other wants to talk. It’s about being there to whisper words that might not mean anything, or that might just mean everything.
It’s about laughing until your stomach hurts. It’s about recalling memories, whether it be last year when you met, or when you bonded over bad hair cuts in Primary school. You a mullet, me a helmet.
It’s about making the time to see each other. Maybe not every week. Maybe not every month. But making the time when you can.
It’s about never judging. Even when I do something really stupid.
It’s about still asking how my dad is, five years on.
It’s about being honest and truthful. It’s about having the confidence to tell me my arse looks big in that dress.
It’s about giving me a solitary “Like” on my status no-one else gets.
It’s about having the courage to get rid of toxic energy in your life, To send that negative “friend” who sucks the life and soul out of you packing. Or to say bye to someone who treats you like crap, without going back for more, simply because you’ve known each other since ’94.
It’s about listening. Even if you can’t relate. Just listen.
It’s about phoning and having a conversation. Not whatsapping. Not Tweeting. And definitely not Poking on Facebook.
It’s about sharing a M&S meal for two on New Years Eve because you’re both single and neither wants to mingle.
It’s about looking back at old photographs and cringing about the clothes you used to wear. Adidas Poppers. Really?
It’s about having a kind heart and an even kinder mouth.
It’s about trusting I’ll have your back, regardless.
It’s about being everything a friend should be.
My circle has never been as strong. This is for all the people I’m lucky to call my friend. I love you.