To My Friends

“When your friend speaks his mind you fear not the “nay” in your own mind, nor do you withhold the “ay.”
And when he is silent your heart ceases not to listen to his heart;
For without words, in friendship, all thoughts, all desires, all expectations are born and shared, with joy that is unacclaimed.”

In recent months, I’ve been so caught up with things that I haven’t been corresponding much with some dear friends. Needless to say, I haven’t forgotten you. And I like to think that our hearts never ceased to still listen to each other. I used to always be so concerned that you know that I am thinking of you and that you feel my care that I think I spent more time acting as a good friend rather than just being one.

I used to be more caught up with ensuring that you knew that I loved you rather than actually loving you. That’s because deep down I’ve always been afraid that you would leave me… that our friendship would lose its value in your eyes… that I would lose you.

But I have been learning… that loving you is ultimately the most important thing. And I’m learning, that loving you is different from talking to you, spending time with you, or even knowing the intimate details of what you’re going through in life. Loving you is playing the part I’m meant to in your life – no less, and no more. I can love you whether you know it or not, believe it or not, and whether you love me in return or not.

This revelation is so new to me. These sentiments are so foreign to what I have felt and believed for so long. And yet, they feel right at home in me.

“When you part from your friend, you grieve not;
For that which you love most in him may be clearer in his absence, as the mountain to the climber is clearer from the plain.
And let there be no purpose in friendship save the deepening of the spirit.”

Here’s to the deepening of our spirit!

**************
Quotes from Gibran’s “The Prophet”

10 Comments

  1. hi Ann!

    Yah, i can’t agree more with you. Your views are quite refreshing, I never thought of looking at friendship from this angle. But u know… I suddenly think that you have attained a certain level of peace & confidence within you of late – knowing that whatever happens outside will not shake you so easily. As your friend, its very nice to see your metamorphosis, your gradual evolution into a beautiful butterfly. And it takes a lot of depth to appreciate your beauty!

    Aiyo, why do i sound so serious… haha

    Bea

  2. Dearest Bea! *hug* :)

    Thank you. What you said touches me very deeply.

    This past year has been a growth spurt for me in so many ways, and even I sometimes cannot grasp the full extent and profundity of the changes that have been and are still going on inside of me.

    It’s like I have a new pair of eyes to see with, and like I have discovered a new room in my heart I didn’t know existed… I see all my relationships in a lovely new light.

    And the strangest thing is, although you (and my other close friends in Singapore) have not been with me during this period of time, and we have hardly talked, I feel as if our friendship has deepened, and somehow I really can appreciate you even more than before! :)

    Love and miss ya.

    Ann

  3. Hi dear,

    “Loving you is playing the part I’m meant to in your life – no less, and no more. I can love you whether you know it or not, believe it or not, and whether you love me in return or not.” – I like these sentences a lot; could I write it down in my blog too? :)

    Actually what you have said, is not new to me. But somehow when I read what you said, I found myself thinking a little otherwise :) Maybe it’s just the ‘spur of the moment’, maybe it’s the rain outside :)

    I think it’s always good to be re-affirmed that you are loved. While you can love me from afar, please do remember to still tell me you love me :) Because whilst I still treasure our times in the past, I look even more forward to our future as friends together :) So please still share your intimate details about your life with me :) Because I feel that people change throughout the years. If we don’t make an effort to share, we may find each other too different. So for me, if possible, I’d still like to know how you are doing, what’s going on in your life, and change together with you. I don’t think we’ll ever lose our friends (the really good ones), we just need to make the effort :)

    What can I say – I’m a high maintenance friend :) Aiyah, I’m not saying that I want to know all your details lah, you know what I mean lah :)

  4. Ha ha Yinwei ah,

    Do you realize that you’re writing the sentiments I’ve always had, and I’ve written sentiments that you’ve always already possessed about friendship? *grin*

    All that you write, I understand. That has always been the way I felt about my friends, but to the extent that I think I have trouble letting them go as we move on in life… not letting go as in losing, but letting go so that they can be the persons they’re meant to be in a new phase of their lives.

    With career and family coming along, we have new responsibilities and priorities. We can’t spend time like we used to with each other, but that doesn’t mean we have to love each other less, does it? Supporting each other to become the best we can be at work and at home… to become better wives to our husbands and mothers to our children, that’s how I see the next phase of our friendship.

    But don’t worry… we’ll be there for each other, and I too hope that we can grow and change along with each other even if not always in the same direction.

    I will remember to tell you I love you. But know that you don’t have to wait for me to tell you that, ok! *hug*

    And P.S. I love you *wink* And yes you can quote me on your blog!

  5. Yes dear,

    As usual we always spice up your blog entries with very ‘rou ma’ correspondences :)

    I totally agree with what you said about the next phase of our friendship :) I look forward to becoming a friend with your family and your children too. :)

    We have always managed to stay together even when we are apart, and frankly I’ve never felt that I would lose you or feel threatened by other friends since we first knew each other. You know I have suffered a lot of pain in some of my friendships and probably that was why I had preferred to take a ‘backseat’ in most of my friendships. I love that we can always catch up even just with a smile after a year of not seeing each other. I love that sometimes I can just ‘feel’ that you are deep in thought even when we have not spoken for weeks or months. It’s uncanny and unbelieveable, but it’s true. I love how we can be so different and yet so similar.

    I probably never really had a real problem with ‘letting go’ of my friends, as I’m so keenly aware that people can change, and so can friendships. You know enough of my past to know what I mean. There are times when I feel that if it’s meant to be it’s meant to be. There are also times when I feel that it’s because i didn’t try hard enough.

    One thing is for sure, the amount of time you spend with each other is definitely not a reflection of the love you have for each other. It is already a challenge to meet up with your family or even your spouse when you are busy, what more your friends. And actually among most of my friends, I already keep in touch a lot with you liao; you can imagine how many friends I have not spoken to in months :) But there are always times when there are pieces of news, that there are certain people you just have to share with :) That’s what I meant la.. haha :)

  6. Ha ha ha…

    *beams at YW* Yes, I know what you mean… every word. You also know of my past enough to know that I’ve been hurt badly in my friendships. When we first became closer, I was so afraid of liking you too much, because I was afraid that this friendship, too, would disappoint me.

    Yes, you and I are so different in some ways, and yet so frighteningly similar in others. *laughs*

    Those SMSes you sent me in December… I was very touched that you wished to share with me even when I am so far away. *smile* You’re always close at heart. And often, when I pick up an Archies comic, laugh at a Friends episode, walk past St. Mikes college or when I see the first snow, I think of you.

    Remember that birthday card you gave me a few years ago? Those two old ladies having tea together? I think of them every now and then when I think of you too. *hug*

  7. Whoa… so much has happened in the space in a mere 24 hours! I suddenly feel like I’m missing out a lot. Thank you YW, I miss you too. And Ann, I miss you also! =)

    I totally agree on the part that you have to actually make an effort to maintain a friendship, cos sometimes pp just change too much too fast and if we don’t keep up, we kinda drift apart. I think as long as you put in your heart to the friendship, the rest I’d say, let nature take its course. If it deepens, you’ve got another close friend, else we just move along. Its the same thing that you gals said, but I think for me, its a way of self protection, cos you know that any extra effort is not going to bear any fruit in the friendship…. so instead of getting hurt, might as well take a back seat and see what happens.

    Heeeheee, YW, I’ll remember to share some of my darkest secrets with you also. That way you know that i’m re-affirming your position as one of my closest friends! *wink* Ann, dun worry, I’ll keep you in the loop as well!!

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