The Importance of Friends

The Next Family

By: Brandy Black

Best Friends


Sophia has a best friend in preschool.  She will be sure to tell you that, too.  She talks about her often, always putting Cece at the top of every list, whether it makes sense or not.  Susan and I sat through our first parent/teacher conference and heard all about Cece and Sophia and their adult conversations.

“It’s my turn to be pushed on the swing, Cece.”

“Ok.”

“I want to go in the bucket swing.”

“Ok, you need a teacher to put you in the bucket swing.”

“Let’s go tell the teacher.”

Cece and Sophia have play dates.  Sophia gets so excited to have her new BFF come over to her house, to show off her room, her toys, her backyard, her snacks.  They are adorable sitting at the miniature table outside chatting about the “beautiful day” and the “beautiful trees”. I couldn’t help but spy on them just to hear their sweet voices and mature conversations.  This is the first time that Sophia has taken interest in a friend, talked about her, deemed her the “one”.

I have always had a best friend for as long as I can remember.  Being an only child, my BFF was like a sibling to me.  It got me thinking of the best friends that I have had in my life and things that I have learned from them at various times…

Colleen (childhood BFF)

–       Having a BFF with a pool is totally awesome!

–       I shouldn’t be afraid of the school bus.

–       Boys are cute.

–       Flag football is fun because of the boys.

–       Peanut butter and fluff sandwiches are the best!

–       Some families get spankings and whippings.

Trace (childhood BFF)

–       It’s ok to be a nerd.

–       The flowing water from the bathtub feels good in your private area.

–       Having just one friend is ok.

Tam (High School BFF)

–       High school can be a blast with a good friend by your side.

–       Intelligence is cool.

–       It’s good to be political.

–       Sarcasm is an art.

–       The Beatles are the best thing that ever happened to music.

–       “Making the squad” means so much more when you do it with your best friend.

Halina (College BFF)

–       Having a childhood filled with meditation is ok.

–       Staying up all night cramming for an exam is not fun.

–       I really can talk things out for hours and get to the bottom of them.

–       A big family is a beautiful thing.

Caren (College BFF to present)

–       Having someone truly know me for years is the best gift I have given myself.

–       Wine, a guitar, and conversation make magical nights.

–       That “coming out” to my best friend means nothing except for more interesting conversations about sex.

–       It’s ok to admit that parenthood isn’t easy and never will be.

–       A non-judgmental best friend is one I should never let go of.

–       I will never be too old to dance, laugh, and be silly.

–       Two hours is not enough time for a phone conversation.

–       Shopping with a BFF is priceless.

These girls have brought me through almost 4 decades of my life and have made me a stronger, more confident girl, teenager, woman, and mother. A close friend is an essential ingredient in life.  They keep you balanced, they don’t put up with your shit, they know you too well, they adore you forever, and they allow you to be vulnerable when no one else will.

Now to watch Sophia, at 3 years old, find her new best friend, her pal for however long it lasts, her partner in crime, it’s special and she’s lucky and I can only hope that she is fortunate enough to understand the true value of a friendship throughout her life.

Thanks girls, wherever you are –I couldn’t have done it without you!

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