Thursday, December 9, 2010

F is for Friends

Ok this is a blog post I'm determined to finish. I've written about a thousand posts in the past two weeks (and by a thousand I mean four), that I've been totally unable to finish. Either I suddenly realized it was past my bedtime (I like to imagine that I have an actual bedtime, unfortunately it is rarely adhered to.... probably because dad is too far away to say "Elizabeth, you're going to be a real pain to wake up tomorrow morning. Go to bed!" and I'm always a pain to wake up...), or (yup, this sentence is continuing, parentheses and all) I find my story turning into a rant, and probably the same old rant I have playing on repeat in my head (and emails to mum and dad) all the time: "what should I do when I grow up? I have no idea." Just to fill you all in on dad's latest response to that one (this was following about a million emails of ideas, suggestions and encouragement) "Lib, seeing as you're mostly grown up, you need to figure it out. Love, Dad." Love you too, Daddy dearest.

Well, I don't think I'll ever really consider myself grown up (ew, I sound like Peter Pan), but I have figured something out: it takes a long time to feel like you know what you're doing in a new setting (school, work, whatever), but if you have fantastic friends (which I always manage to find) then at least it will make the stress/frustration/disappointments more enjoyable... or ignorable.

I think at every point in my life this has been true. I always hated sleep over camps as a kid (I still hate anything resembling sleep over camps... organized activities, days scheduled from dusk till dawn... *shiver*), but there was always something to get you through them (no matter how many tear stained, calligraphy written, cartoon decorated "take me home please" letters were ignored by your parents in the meantime)-- your friends. I never bothered making new friends at camp (puh-lease, that would just be an excuse to send me back), but I always managed to go with some of my usual friends, or at least my sister, and that made it bearable. Nothing cures homesickness like making fun of annoying kids with your friends.

But the key point there is really friends (making fun of people by yourself is boring, if not pointless... oh and I'm not encouraging bullying.... this is the kind of teasing that my dear sister in law subjected me to for whole summers at a time to try to toughen me up a bit... Did it work?). And friends can mean family and vice versa. I feel like the older you get, saying this from my wise old age of 22, the more the line blurs. Your friends can become your family and your family, if you're lucky (and if you're me), can become your friends.

The point is, you should appreciate your friends. They're the people that agree with you that a "tap dance independent study" would be much better than a regular high school class, or stand up for you against French-Canadian boat owners who are sure that "Libbyyy!" made a reservation for their goat. They're the ones that lend you their clothes so you don't look like a middle schooler or redneck when you go out on the town (I really need to go shopping). Then, they make sure that you don't go to work in the morning covered in permanent marker (what? No, that never happened... just a random example). And they're the ones that take the time to read (or at least skim) your ridiculous blog that's not at all what it was supposed to be ("I'll update all about Uganda and what my work is like there!").

So, thus concludes my friends post (sadly, not at all about the show "Friends." But I'm sure I could tie it in here if I tried... I'll spare you). I think I should also mention that the whole time I've been writing this, a stupid Spongebob song has been playing in my head:

"F is for friends we do things together
U is for you and me
N is for anywhere and anytime at all down here in the deep blue sea.*"

-Quoth the Sponge

I think you get the point.

*Marf, that was dedicated to you!

ps- I've learned my lesson about parentheses. They started as literary device (going for the stream of consciousness effect, pretty reflective of how I tell "stories"), and they turned into a crutch. Alas, a complete entry was finally posted after two months of radio silence. (Patting myself on the back).